El-Khamisy research group website: https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/mbb/staff/sherifelkhamisy
Our DNA is constantly exposed to different sources of stress. Some of these happen from normal processes in our cells, while others are caused by external factors. Thankfully, our cells have a fantastic repair system that can detect and repair our damaged DNA. However, in some cases something goes wrong and the consequences of accumulated DNA damage are ageing, cancer and neurodegeneration.
In the El-Khamisy Research Group, we focus on the study of DNA damage, and the things that occur when the repair system fails. For our research, we use human primary cells as well as cancerous and modified cell lines. For the study of the brain specifically, the challenge is the lack of access to human brain cells; therefore, in the lab this is resolved by reprogramming and differentiating skin cells, to form brain cells (neurons).