Lab members

Principal Investigator: Gayle Doherty


Gayle Doherty graduated with a B.Sc. in Developmental Biology from the University of Glasgow followed by a PhD in Neuroscience at the University of St Andrews. She returned to St Andrews in 2004 to hold two independent research fellowships (sponsored by Research into Ageing and the Alzheimer’s Society) prior to being appointed as Lecturer in Neuroscience in 2013.

Postdoctoral research assistant

Emily Messer graduated from The University of Dundee with a BSc Hons in Biology and then went on to do a PhD at the University of St Andrews in Psychology and Neuroscience. Since finishing her PhD in 2014 she has done postdocs at The University of St Andrews and Heriot-Watt University. Emily is a primatologist with interests in social behaviour and learning and a keen science communicator.  Emily joins us on our Wellcome ISSF funded project aiming to bring Psychology & Neuroscience into schools and help us engage young people with the important findings from our research.

PhD Students

Mizuki Morisaki graduated with a B.Sc. in Neuroscience CIMG4275from the University of St Andrews before joining the group for her PhD studies.She is interested in examining how chronic stress affects brain ageing, focusing on biochemical and cognitive aspects of the brain in different animal models.


Ying Cheng graduated with an M.Sc. in Neurology 照片 003副本from Southeast University in China before joining us for her PhD study. Ying is interested in exploring an important link between leptin and the mitochondrion in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease.


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Alison Holiday graduated with a Neuroscience from the University of St Andrews before joining the group for her PhD studies. Alison is investigating the therapeutic potential of hormone-based drugs in the fight against neurodegeneration and is also studying the role of these hormones in normal ageing.



Lisa Strother graduated with a B.Sc. in NeuroscienceControl x40 from the University of Dundee before joining the group for her PhD. Lisa is interested in explaining why homocysteine is a risk factor for neurodegeneration and has focused her studies on metabolites of this compound.


Masters students

Emma Ritson will re-join us to embark on a collaborative project with Professor Keith Sillar’s lab to investigate teratogenesis in Xenopus laevis larvae.

Catharine Dunlavey joins us in September 2018 to investigate the role of ER stress in models of neurodegeneration.


Undergraduate project students

Grey Seiler is investing the potential for a novel class of pharmaceutical reagents to aid in the fight against neuroblastoma.

Sumi Bez and Judi Croudace are investigating novel compounds that could potentially help in the fight against neurdegeneration in collaboration with the Goss group in the School of Chemistry

Dorothy MacFarlane is testing therapeutics to combat ER stress.

Alycia Class is interested in the molecular underpinnings of neurodegeneration and ageing.