Current members

Alfredo Castello, principal investigator

Viruses rely on host RNA-binding proteins to replicate. My laboratory aims to identify which cellular RNA-binding proteins are involved in infection and how. To answer this question, we use cutting edge virology, proteomics, genomics and super-resolution microscopy, and collaborate with top researchers across the globe. I envision that our research will uncover novel therapeutic targets against viruses holding broad-spectrum potential. 

Marko Noerenberg, Postdoctoral associate

My goal is to identify and characterise the repertoire of RNA-binding proteins involved in HIV infection. As a first member of the Castello lab, I contributed to setup the lab and to implement and develop most of the methods that we employ in our research. Amongst them, I have developed novel approaches to study, in high-throughput manner, HIV fitness.

Manuel Garcia Moreno, Postdoctoral associate

I am to understand how cellular proteins control the early stages of HIV infection. To answer this question, I combine my expertise in virology and molecular biology with new techniques that I am learning in the Castello lab, such as proteomics and super-resolution microscopy.

Aino Järveling, Postdoctoral associate

I work between the Davis and Castello lab aiming to understand the binding preferences of cellular RNA-binding proteins using iCLIP. My research combines working on the bench and analysing the data by computational means.

Wael Kamel, Postdoctoral associate

I aim to elucidate whether cellular RNA-binding proteins can be targeted to inhibit viruses. To understand the potential of these proteins for therapies, I am performing an unprecedented functional screen using different types of viruses.

Caroline Lenz, DPhil student – Biochemistry programme

I employ new proteomic approaches to understand HIV infection. My training in virology and proteomics allow me to generate the samples, run them in the mass spectrometer and analyse the data.

Honglin Chen, DPhil student – Biochemistry programme

Co-supervised by Shabaz Mohammed, I have learned how to perform and analyse proteomic experiments. I will use this knowledge to understand what interferon does to cells to impair viral replication. 

Samantha Moor, DPhil student – Ludwig programme

I aim to understand how the RNA-binding activity recently discovered in few tumour suppressors contribute to their role at making cell fate decisions. To do so I employ iCLIP, a method that combines immunoprecipitation and RNA sequencing to discover the footprints of proteins on its the target RNAs.

Catherine Truman, DPhil student – Biochemistry programme

My goal is to discover the molecular partners of the HIV accessory protein Rev. For this, I will employ cutting-edge proteomics, transcriptomics and computational analysis.

Marcel Bach-Pages, DPhil student – DTP BBSRC programme

I aim to understand how RNA-binding proteins control bacteria infection in plants. My project is a collaborative effort between the Gail Preston lab (Plant Sciences) and the Castello lab (Biochemistry) combining their expertise in plant-pathogen interactions and RNA biology, respectively.

Thierry Cottineau, Master student – visitor

I aim to elucidate how the helicase DDX1 controls HIV infection. I will employ a genetic screen to determine the which protein complexes and pathways are involved in the capacity of DDX1 to support HIV infection.

Jessica Quirke, Part II Biochemistry student

I aim to visualise cellular RNA-binding proteins incorporated into HIV capsids using single particle tracking and super-resolution microscopy.

Morgan Elsmore, Part II Biochemistry student

My goal is to develop a robust and sensitive method to capture viral RNA with the proteins bound to it. In the long term, this method will be used to decipher the composition of viral RBPs.