I work at the interface of Cell and Developmental biology to discover how cell signalling controls neural differentiation. We investigate how signalling pathways interact and how they direct chromatin-organisation mechanisms at differentiation gene loci. We also use real-time imaging approaches to determine how signals regulate cell biological mechanisms that mediate cellular differentiation. Most recently we have uncovered a new form of cell sub-division, apical abscission, which regulates signal transduction in newborn neurons and is required for the generation of normal neuronal and tissue architecture in the developing nervous system.
The very different demands of our working lives have shaped our family life and the way we have shared childcare. I am laboratory based. Jonathan works at sea for up to a few months, on and off, throughout the year. However, when he is back he works from home and his time is quite flexible. I took a career break and worked part-time for five years when our children were young and for around eight years we had a childminder at home. We have probably both gone to fewer meetings than our colleagues. On the upside we have shared adventures with our children at sea.