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Dr Martin Cohn and Dr Lidia Vasilieva

Martin's research

My research is focused on understanding how the various DNA repair pathways function in human cells in order to maintain genome integrity. Using a combination of molecular biology, cell biology and biochemistry, we are continuing to identify and study new proteins that play key roles in human DNA repair pathways.

Lidia's research

My research aims to address one of the fundamental questions in biology, which is how do cells convert the information encoded in DNA into functional units (proteins). An important means of regulating the level of a protein in all cells is by controlling the amount of messenger RNA (mRNA) produced from the corresponding gene since mRNAs are translated to yield protein. My group investigates molecular mechanisms involved in regulation of production and levels of individual RNAs since both too much and too little of certain RNA species could be deleterious resulting in severe diseases in humans.

Our journey

We moved to Oxford to start our independent research groups after doing our postdocs at Harvard Medical School in Boston. We are both Group Leaders and were fortunate to get positions in the same city, which is not always the case for double PI couples. Both of our kids were born at the same time as we were setting up our labs, during our career development fellowships. This was quite challenging and meant hard work, especially since neither of our families live in the UK. The local nursery, and now an Au Pair, help.

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