Institute of Neuroscience

Staff Profile

Dr Fei Gao

Research Associate


I am a post-doctoral research associate working in Professors Robert Lightowlers and Zosia Chrzanowska-Lightowlers' lab at University of Newcastle. I am funded by the Wellcome Trust with the aim of my project to identify the related signalling pathways of cell growth arrest caused by mitochondrial translation defects. My area of expertise is mitochondrial research.


Mitochondria are the vital organelles containing their own genome. Dysfunctional mitochondria may be due to the defect of nuclear-encoded proteins or 13 mitochondrial-encoded proteins. Mitochondrial dysfunction causes a variety of human mitochondrial diseases. It has been found that loss of mitochondrial translation proteins cause human cell death, cell growth arrest and cell morphology changes. However, the mechanism behind is still unclear.

My project aims to find the related mitochondrial signalling molecules and pathways which monitor mitochondria quality and communicate between mitochondria and the nucleus. High-throughput screening and microarray are good tools to determine the signalling pathways in this project. The finding of this project will help us gain a better understanding of the mechanism of mitochondria disease and a potential way for the future drug design.