Flow Cytometry Core Facility

Staff Profile

Dr David McDonald

Flow Cytometry Core Facility Manager


Flow Cytometry Core Facility Manager

High Dimensional Cytometry Specialist 

I am a high dimensional cytometry specialist and mass cytometry specialist within the flow cytometry core facility. My principal responsibilities are to support genomic, mass and high-parameter fluorescence cytometry projects: providing in-depth panel advice, project planning and expertise for our high-end analysers and cytof systems.

As a UK expert in high-plex cytometry, I lead the Newcastle University Single Cell Technologies special interest group within the Innovation, Methodology and Application theme. We continue to ensure that Newcastle University remains at the global forefront of single cell analysis and that our data is of the highest quality and reproducibility.

Previous Appointments

Post-doctoral Research Associate: Primary Immunodeficiency.

Investigating the genetic and molecular basis of novel, human, primary immune deficiencies. 


PhD: Autoimmune Endocrinology

Investigating the immunomodulatory effects of antithyroid drugs in autoimmune thyroid disease via structurally induced changes in autoantigens.


Research Interests

Genomic Cytometry

I have a special interest in the combinatorial analysis of protein and RNA using targeted sequencing approaches at he single cell level. The flow cytometry core facility at Newcastle University is at the forefront of these genomic cytometry assays utilising BD Rhapsody technology to investigate multiple disease states affecting our UK population.  

Imaging Mass Cytometry and Cytof Analysis

As one of the most experienced imaging and suspension mass cytometry operators in Europe, I work with our highly skilled team to ensure that we consistently drive this critical resource within the FCCF to its full potential. With a crucial focus on optimising methodology we ensure the data from our system is robust and of the vey highest standard.

High Dimensional Fluorescence Cytometry

As an early adopter of high-plex fluorescent cytometry, I continue to push the achievable boundaries of fluorescent cytometry. Our efforts to optimise panel design and implementation has realised the full potential of our 30 parameter Symphony A5 analyser. As the flow cytometry core moves to advancements in spectra cytometry, we will once again be increasing the measurable parameter space in this exciting field.  

Primary immunodeficiency

By way of whole-exome deep-sequencing followed by molecular characterisation, my post-doctoral research aimed to unravel the underlying basis of novel, human, primary immune deficiencies. I continue to identify as an immunologist as well as a cytometrist with a particular interested in lymphocyte signalling, senescence and cell-death pathways.

Viral recognition and killing by natural killer cells

Previous research also sort to understand NK-cell immune evasion strategies employed by Herpes viruses, a common complication in immunocompromised individuals