Samantha Loh

MRC Toxicology UnitUnited Kingdom

Dr Samantha H.Y. Loh is currently a Senior Scientist in charge of a Drosophila research facility at the MRC Toxicology Unit. Her main research interests involve using the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, as an animal model system to study molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in human diseases such as cancer and neurodegeneration. She conducted her Ph.D. studies under the supervision of Professor Michael Ashburner at the Department of Genetics and Churchill College, University of Cambridge (UK). This work involved the molecular and genetic characterisation of the Drosophila Sox (Sry-type HMG box) genes. Subsequently, her research focus shifted onto the emerging field of high throughput RNA interference genetic screens. She worked as a post-doctoral researcher in the laboratory of Professor Pierluigi Nicotera at the MRC Toxicology Unit in Leicester, UK. During this period, she established a high content RNAi screening system and managed a research project to screen for kinases involved in neurite outgrowth and retraction in neuronal culture cells. Her work from this initial in vitro screening system led to the further characterisation of some of the candidate hits in vivo by using the Drosophila model system. Currently, her research focuses on dissecting the molecular and cellular mechanisms of neurodegeneration as well as the signal transduction pathways that regulate mitochondrial-dependent apoptosis.

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