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Professor Alex Cameron

Supervisor Details

Professor Alex Cameron

Contact Details

Professor Alex Cameron

School of Life Sciences, University of Warwick

Research Interests

How do proteins move specific molecules across cell membranes? How do other proteins act as signal transducers to turn an interaction with a molecule into a response by the cell? These are the type of questions we are trying to address in our research.

We are particularly interested in membrane transport proteins. These are proteins that act as gatekeepers to allow specific molecules, such as nutrients, to cross cell membranes, while preventing others, which may be toxic to the cell, from doing so. They can be important in the drug discovery process: drugs could be designed that would inhibit the natural function of the transporter and so kill or change the function of the cell, which could alter the course of a disease; they may be utilised to allow drugs to enter cells, or they may actively pump drugs out of the cell. We want to understand how these proteins function and how they can be controlled for drug discovery. We are doing this by investigating the atomic structure of the proteins through techniques such as X-ray crystallography or cryo-EM, in combination with biochemical experiments.

Another significant research area of the group is on a second type of membrane protein: channels. Channels open or close in response to stimuli to allow molecules to cross the membrane. The proteins that we are investigating have been shown to open and close in response to carbon dioxide by my collaborator at the School of Life Sciences, Professor Nicholas Dale. Our research focusses on understanding how changes in levels of carbon dioxide can open or close these channels, which has important consequences for the control of breathing, and how this is altered in specific diseases.

Ultimately our research revolves around a fascination of how proteins function as molecular machines, and how they can be exploited in drug discovery.

Project Details

Prof Cameron is the supervisor on the below projects:

Prof Cameron is also the co-supervisor on projects with Professor Phill Stansfeld, Dr Manuela Tosin, and Professor Ioannis Nezis.

Previous Projects