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The University of Southampton
Biological Sciences

Dr Joanne Cowan PhD

BBSRC Research Fellow in Molecular Cell Biology

Dr Joanne Cowan's photo

Dr Joanne Cowan is BBSRC Research Fellow in Molecular Cell Biology within  Biological Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Career history

2009-present: Postdoctoral Research Fellow. University of Southampton, UK.
2007-2009: Medical Writer. UBC Envision Group, UK.
2006-2007: Postdoctoral Research Fellow. University of Sussex, UK.

Academic qualifications

2006-2007: DPhil. University of Sussex, UK. Thesis topic "Translational control during cellular stress and differentiation of C2C12 myoblasts".
2002-2005: BSc (Hons) in Molecular Genetics in Biotechnology. University of Sussex, UK.

Research interests

I undertake research into the regulation of eukaryotic translation initiation. This is the process by which a ribosome is brought to the initiation codon of an mRNA, requiring numerous accessory factors. These factors and their interactions are tightly regulated by a number of signalling pathways, which can increase or decrease the efficiency of translation. Furthermore, we are also investigating the contribution that certain sequences within mRNAs make to their translational control.
Currently, I am investigating the role of alternative translation initiation events within human mRNAs. In particular, we are interested in how alternative protein isoforms generated in this way may lead to them having different subcellular localisations. This work is funded by the BBSRC.

Supervisor: Dr Mark Coldwell

Research group

Molecular and Cellular Biosciences


BIOL2011 Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry


BIOL2011 Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

Project student trainer 

BIOL3034 In-depth Research Project
BIOL6013 Advanced Research Project

University of Southampton

Postdoctoral Representative on CfBS Policy and Resources Committee
Member of Fellows in Biological Sciences (FiBS) Steering Committee
Contributor to National Science & Engineering Week Open Days
Provider of practical experience to outreach students from South Wiltshire University Technical College

Dr Joanne Cowan
Biological Sciences Faculty of Natural & Environmental Sciences Life Sciences Building 85 University of Southampton Highfield Campus Southampton SO17 1BJ
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