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Andrea Brand

2017 BrandAndrea Brand PhD FRS FMedSci, Head of Institute's Wellcome labs, Wellcome Senior Investigator, Herchel Smith Professor of Molecular Biology, Royal Society Darwin Trust Research Professor, Member of the Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience.

Europe PMC | Pubmed

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Time to wake up: regulation of stem cell quiescence and proliferation

Stem cell populations in tissues as varied as blood, gut and brain spend much of their time in a mitotically dormant, quiescent, state. A key point of regulation is the decision between quiescence and proliferation. The ability to reactivate neural stem cells in situ raises the prospect of potential future therapies for brain repair after damage or neurodegenerative disease.

Understanding the molecular basis for stem cell reactivation is an essential first step in this quest. In Drosophila, quiescent neural stem cells are easily identifiable and amenable to genetic manipulation, making them a powerful model with which to study the transition between quiescence and proliferation. These stem cells exit quiescence in response to a nutrition-dependent signal from the fat body, a tissue that plays a key role in the regulation of metabolism and growth.

My lab combines cutting-edge genetic and molecular approaches with advanced imaging techniques to study the reactivation of Drosophila neural stem cells in vivo. This enables us to deduce the sequence of events from the level of the organism, to the tissue, the cell, and finally the genome.


Selected publications:

• Cattenoz PB, Popkova A, Southall TD, Aiello G, Brand AH, Giangrande A. (2016) Functional Conservation of the Glide/Gcm Regulatory Network Controlling Glia, Hemocyte, and Tendon Cell Differentiation in Drosophila. Genetics 202(1):191-219.

• Marshall OJ and Brand AH (2015) damidseq_pipeline: an automated pipeline for processing DamID sequencing datasets. Bioinformatics 31(20):3371-3.

• Spéder P, Brand AH. (2014) Gap junction proteins in the blood-brain barrier control nutrient-dependent reactivation of Drosophila neural stem cells. Developmental Cell 30(3):309-21. 

• Southall TD, Davidson CM, Miller C, Carr A and Brand AH (2014) Dedifferentiation of neurons precedes tumor formation in lola mutantsDevelopmental Cell 10.1016/j.devcel.2014.01.030

• Southall TD, Gold KS, Egger B, Davidson CM, Caygill EE, Marshall OJ and Brand AH (2013) Cell type-specific profiling of gene expression and chromatin binding without cell isolation: Assaying RNA Pol II occupancy in neural stem cells. Developmental Cell 26, 101-112

• Cheetham SW and Brand AH (2013) Insulin finds its niche. Science 340, 817-818

• Chell JM and Brand AH (2010) Nutrition-responsive glia control exit of neural stem cells from quiescence. Cell 143(7), 1161-1173

Brand Group May 2018

Video: Meet Andrea Brand


Neha Agrawal • Diana Arman • Benjamin Badger • Catherine Davidson • Anna Hakes • Leia Judge • Robert Krautz • Stephanie Norwood • Takumi Suzuki • Jocelyn Tang • Christine Turner • Jelle van den Ameele • Rebecca Yakob • Mo Zhao