Project Summary

Membrane lipid composition influences the localisation of membrane proteins and regulates their activity. The hundreds of chemically distinct lipids within cell membranes phase-separate to form microdomains that impact the localisation and interactions of membrane proteins. The composition of the cell membrane is tightly controlled in normal cellular function. There is now considerable evidence that altered cell homeostasis, ranging from inflammatory processes to cancer, cause alterations in metabolic pathways which impact membrane lipid distributions, cell biophysical properties and membrane protein function. This may have downstream impacts on the uptake and efficacy of a range of pharmaceuticals used to treat dysfunction. Using data derived from mass spectrometry and other experimental approaches, this project will use multiscale simulation techniques to examine how changes in lipid membrane composition in cancer and other disease states impacts drug uptake. This knowledge will provide a means to specifically target a given cell type through the drug delivery systems and targeted therapeutics.

Project members

Professor Megan O'Mara

Senior Group Leader
O'Mara Group