School of Life Sciences

Marios Georgiou

Assistant Professor of Cell Biology, Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences



2002: PhD in Developmental Neurobiology, King's College, London. 2003: awarded an EMBO long-term fellowship to work at the IMP in Vienna. 2004: post-doctoral fellow at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Cell Biology, UCL.

Marios joined the University of Nottingham in 2011 as a Assistant Professor of Cell Biology. He was awarded a prestigious Cancer Research UK Career Establishment Award in 2011.

Expertise Summary

Dr Marios Georgiou is Assistant Professor of Cell Biology at the School of Life Sciences, University of Nottingham.

Dr Georgiou is a Cancer Research UK Career Establishment Award Fellow.

Dr Georgiou is a member of Cancer Research Nottingham.

Teaching Summary

Dr Georgiou is module convenor for the following module:

LIFE4114 Biochemistry of Cancer

And contributes to the following modules:

LIFE3039 Molecular Diagnostics and Therapeutics (Gene Therapy)

LIFE2063 Genotype to Phenotype and Back Again

LIFE2074 Signalling and Metabolic Regulation

Research Summary

During animal development, individual cells change their shape in response to an unfolding morphogenetic program. This process culminates in the generation of hundreds of terminally differentiated… read more

Applications are invited from exceptional graduates and post-doctoral researchers with an interest in cell morphogenesis and cancer biology. Additionally, we also have an interest in the study of a wide range of human diseases, including COPD, asthma, Alzheimer's Disease, and motor neurone disease. Our study of cell and tissue morphology is relevant to an array of human diseases.

Candidates interested in joining our lab to work in these research areas can contact Dr Georgiou by sending an e-mail to


We regularly offer exciting PhD opportunities as part of the BBSRC Doctoral Training Programme (DTP).

For more on the scheme see:

The BBSRC DTP provides FOUR years funding as well as a tailored training programme for each student.

Additionally, in the third year of your PhD you will be able to undertake a 3-month Professional Internship or 'PIP'. This internship is not directly related to the PhD project, but is designed to offer you experience in one of a number of career sectors, including: teaching, policy-making, media, industry etc.


Other positions are also available to self-funded applicants.


Please be aware that applications for PhD or post-doc funding should be made at least 9 months before desired starting date.

Funding for PhDs:

There are a number of international studentships available to international applicants, see:

Funding for Post-docs:

Wellcome Trust:

EMBO fellowships:

EU fellowships:

Human Frontier Science Program fellowships:

Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship:

MRC Career Development Award:

BBSRC Discovery Fellowship:

Royal Society University Research Fellowship:

CRUK Career Development Fellowship:

Current Research

During animal development, individual cells change their shape in response to an unfolding morphogenetic program. This process culminates in the generation of hundreds of terminally differentiated cell types with distinct forms and functions. The developmental mechanisms behind the generation of these distinct morphologies are still largely unknown. My interest lies in studying the process of cell morphogenesis to give insights into cell function, tissue homeostasis and disease.

The lab uses the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster as a model organism. With Drosophila it is possible to use sophisticated genetic techniques to label and manipulate individual cells within a living tissue. Combined with state-of-the-art cell biology it is possible to image, in real time, in a living organism, cell morphology and behaviour in high resolution. Our research ambitions are to identify the fundamental cell biological processes that orchestrate cell and tissue morphogenesis, both during normal development, and under conditions that mimic those of human disease, primarily focusing on cancer biology, but also collaborating with other groups whose interest lies in the study of other human diseases where normal cell or tissue morphology is compromised (including COPD, asthma, Alzheimer's Disease, and motor neurone disease).

Cell morphogenesis: Using this in vivo system we can study diverse cell types and cell shapes, from simple columnar epithelial cells to the neurones of the central nervous system, which possess morphologies of astounding complexity. We aim to identify the genes involved in generating this vast array of distinct morphologies.

Cancer biology: Additionally, by focusing on epithelial sheets of cells, we can identify the fundamental cell biological processes that orchestrate cell and tissue morphogenesis during normal development and under conditions that mimic those of tumour development. With funding from Cancer Research UK, undertook a large-scale screen for conserved modulators of tumour behaviour, allowing the identification of numerous tumour and invasion suppressors. This screen is now completed and published in full (Canales CoutiƱo et al., iScience, 2020).

To increase the accessibility of the results from our genetic screen, we also developed an open access, searchable online resource (see: This resource makes our database, as well as all high-resolution images, available to the scientific community in an online, user-friendly, custom made website.

Research at the lab therefore lies at an interface between cell, developmental and cancer biology, with recent papers addressing a number of fundamental processes such as the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton, cell polarity, cell morphology, cell adhesion, endocytosis, trafficking, tissue architecture and cell signalling.

Key areas of research interest:

Cell and tissue morphology

Cell polarity

Actin cytoskeleton

Rho GTPases

Cancer biology

The use of the fruit fly to model human disease

School of Life Sciences

University of Nottingham
Medical School
Queen's Medical Centre
Nottingham NG7 2UH

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