Beggs' lab closing team!

Jean Beggs- Group leader 

Jean is now Emeritus Professor of Molecular Biology at the University of Edinburgh. She obtained a BSc Hons in Biochemistry and PhD at Glasgow University. Following a postdoc with the late Professors Sir Kenneth and Noreen Murray in the Dept of Molecular Biology, University of Edinburgh, she was awarded a Beit Memorial Fellowship for Medical Research and moved to the Plant Breeding Institute, Cambridge. There she completed work to develop yeast two micron plasmid cloning vectors for highly efficient gene cloning in yeast, which helped to transform yeast molecular genetics. She then moved to a lectureship at the Dept of Biochemistry, Imperial College London, where she began her long-term study of yeast RNA splicing machinery. In 1985 she returned to Edinburgh funded by a Royal Society University Research Fellowship and then by a Royal Society Cephalosporin Fund Senior Research Fellowship and, subsequently, the Royal Society Darwin Trust Research Professorship. She was awarded the Royal Society Gabor Medal in 2003, the Biochemical Society Novartis Medal and Prize in 2004, and the RNA Society Lifetime Achievement Award in 2018. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society and of the Royal Society of Edinburgh where she was Vice President for Life Sciences from 2009 til 2012. In 2006 was appointed CBE for services to science. The laboratory was mainly funded by the Wellcome Trust and in 2015 Jean was awarded Wellcome Trust Investigator status. In June 2019 she retired from her University of Edinburgh Professorial appointment and closed her laboratory. She was appointed Emeritus Professor of Molecular Biology and is an emeritus member of the Wellcome Centre for Cell Biology.

©Antonia Reeve


Emanuela Sani - Postdoctoral research associate

Emanuela completed her PhD at the University of Glasgow in Anna Amtmann's laboratory focusing on epigenetic changes under stress conditions in Arabidopsis. In the Beggs' lab she investigated the link between splicing and chromatin. She is currently a postdoc David Tollervey's lab. 


Eve Hartswood - Graduate research associate

Eve joined Edinburgh University in 1993 working initially with Prof. David Finnegan on retrotransposition. She became interested in RNA localisation motifs working in collaboration with Prof. Ilan Davis (Oxford). After working with Dr. Laura Spagnolo in structural biology she joined the Beggs group to apply proteomic and biophysical techniques to understand the protein interactions that control co-transcriptional splicing. 




Jim Brodie - Postdoctoral research associate

Jim worked remotely, carrying out analysis of our mass spectometry and other data


Shiney George - Postdoctoral research associate

Shiney has an MSc in Food Biotechnology from Strathclyde University, and she completed her PhD in the Institute of Cell and Molecular Biology at Newcastle University, in the laboratory of Dr Jeremy Brown, where she studied the translational coupling mechanism in Respiratory Syncytial Virus. She joined our lab in January 2018 to work on features that affect splicing of ribosomal protein transcripts.                           




Recently departed  lab members


Isabella Maudlin - Wellcome Trust PhD student

Bella obtained a BSc with Hons in Molecular Genetics at the University of Edinburgh and an MPhil in Biological Sciences at the University of Cambridge. She joined the Wellcome Trust 4-year PhD Programme in Cell Biology at the University of Edinburgh in October 2014 and joined our lab a year later. Her PhD project was to investigate how splicing causes transcriptional pausing and how splicing affects histone modification in yeast. After completeing her PhD in 2018, she moved to a postdoctoral position at the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford.


Susana de Lucas - Postdoctoral research associate

Susana joined the lab after a postdoc in the laboratory of Prof. Juan Ortin at the National Centre for Biotechnology (CNB-CSIC) in Madrid where she analysed the association of mRNAs with human Staufen1 and hStaufen1's role during influenza virus infection. In our she investigated features that affect splicing of ribosomal protein transcripts. In late 2018, she returned to Madrid, to work in science communication.



David Barrass - Graduate research associate

David Graduated from the University of Edinburgh before working in PPL Therapeutics for 10 years as the Head of Molecular Genetics.  Following that company's demise he moved into RNA processing in the Beggs lab. He optimised a method for high kinetic resolution analysis of transcription and splicing in yeast. He now holds an IT post in the School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh and he still visis the lab almost daily!


Gonzalo Mendoza Ochoa- PhD student

Gonzalo completed his undergraduate degree in Biology at the University of UAG (Mexico). Now he is exploring the regulation of splicing, with particular interest in understanding co-transcriptional spliceosome assembly. He is funded by a studentship from CONACyT (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (the National Council of Science and Technology), Mexico. Gonzalo is investigating the consequences of rapid knock-down of different splicing factors. Gonzalo graduated PhD in 2017 and is now in a postdoctoral position in Cambridge 



Vahid Aslanzadeh- Darwin Trust Phd student

Vahid carried out his master degree in the laboratory of Dr Mehdi Sadeghi (Iran), where he studied computational alternative splicing prediction. He is now studying the effects of RNA polymerase elongation mutants on co-transcriptional splicing in yeast, funded by a studentship from the Darwin Trust of Edinburgh. Vahid graduated PhD in 2017 and is now in a postdoctoral position in the MRC Human Genomics Unit, Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, University of Edinburgh.


Edward Wallace - Marie Curie Research Fellow

Edward has a B.A. Hons. in Mathematics from the University of Cambridge and a Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of Chicago. Retraining in biology, he spent one year as a postdoc at the FAS Center for Systems Biology, Harvard University, followed by four years in the Dept. of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Chicago. At the start of 2016, he moved to Edinburgh, funded by a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research Fellowship, dividing his time between the Edinburgh Informatics Forum (with Guido Sanguinetti) and the Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, combining experimental studies of RNA metabolism and RNA-protein interactions while enhancing his bioinformatics skills. he is now a Wellcome Trust Research Fellow and group leader in Synthsis, University of Edinburgh. 



Former Lab Members

Darek Abramczyk

Robert Crawford

Penny Hirsch

Margaret McGarvey

Michael Spiller

Michael Albers

Vanessa Cristão

Peter Hodges

Gonzalo Mendoza-Ochoa

Stefan Teigelkamp (deceased)

Ross Alexander

Mike Dalrymple

Olga Ignatovich

John Morran

Barbara Terlouw

Gordon Anderson

Ann Diment

Steve Innocente

Mariela Muraru

Marian Thomson

Tatsiana Auchynnikava

Ian Dix

Steve Jackson

Julia Neumeier

Elizabeth Thompson

Frankie Bligh

Gretchen Edwalds-Gilbert

Derek Jamieson

Mary Plumpton

Lori Verdone

Jeremy Brown

Charlotte Capitanchik

Parastoo Ehsani

Silvia Galardi

Florance Kennedy

Helen Kulesza

David Page

Rob van Nues

Keerthi Chathoth

Amit Gautam

David King

Melanie Lee

Jane Reid

Valerie Vidal

Alan Colley

Richard Grainger

Boon Kum Loong

Martin Reijns

Erica Whittaker

Michelle Cooper

Elena Hackl

Marie Lossky

Caroline Russell


Olivier Cordin Daniela Hahn Andrew Mayes Paul Smith