Pain Centre Versus Arthritis

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Cornelia de Moor

Associate Professor in RNA Biology, Faculty of Science



Cornelia de Moor is an RNA biologist with a long term interest in the untranslated regions (UTRs) and poly(A) tails of mRNAs and their effects on protein synthesis and mRNA degradation.

As a postgraduate student she studied the translational control of insulin like growth factor by its alternative 5' UTRs in human tissues. During my postdoctoral research, she investigated the role of translational control in Xenopus oocyte maturation and made significant contributions to the elucidation the translational repression of cyclin B1 and its activation by cytoplasmic polyadenylation. Her work was instrumental in formulating the first molecular model for translational control by a 3' untranslated region, the maskin model.

In 2000, she started her own laboratory as a lecturer in the School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Nottingham, transferring to the School of Pharmacy in 2005. In 2013, she was promoted to associate professor. Most of her current work is on the role of mRNA polyadenylation in gene expression and the therapeutic potential of the polyadenylation inhibitor cordycepin, which is isolated from the caterpillar fungus Cordyceps militaris.

Her laboratory uses mathematical modelling, standard molecular biology techniques, as well as a number of novel techniques developed in our laboratory, such as methods for measuring poly(A) tail size, mathematical modeling of mRNA decay and thiouridine labelling. In collaboration with others, she is studying the role of mRNA polyadenylation and the effect of cordycepin on the growth of breast cancer cells and on osteoarthritis pain. In collaboration with others, her laboratory also works on the role of cordycepin and other secondary metabolites in the infection of insects by fungi and the metabolism of cordycepin and other nucleosides in whole animals and cells. A recent project is on the role of mRNA localisation and polyadenylation in the sensitisation of pain nerve cells. Her research has been funded by grants fromthe BBSRC and Versus Arthritis, as well as a donation from Geo-rope.

Expertise Summary

messenger RNA, protein synthesis, gene expression, polyadenylation, cordycepin, Cordyceps

Teaching Summary

B31ESP Introductory Molecular Biology, Genetics and Metabolism (8 lectures). B31GIL Gut Microbiology (4 lectures) B31GIL Case studies Personal Tutor of 16 Pharmacy students

Research Project supervisor for 3 pharmacy students (3rd year)

Research Summary

The research in my laboratory focuses on post-transcriptional gene regulation of mRNA and protein expression, especially by sequences downstream of the stop codon of the protein coding region. This… read more

Selected Publications

Pharmacy School Building, East Drive, University Park, Nottingham, NG7 2RD

Current Research

The research in my laboratory focuses on post-transcriptional gene regulation of mRNA and protein expression, especially by sequences downstream of the stop codon of the protein coding region. This type of gene regulation is much more common than previously thought, and includes modulation of mRNA stability, translational control, mRNA localisation and changes in nuclear polyadenylation. The regulation is generally mediated by RNA binding proteins, microRNAs and/or polyadenylation and deadenylation. We study these processes in cell lines during cell adhesion and proliferation, during the inflammatory response and in human embryonic stem cells. Recently, we have also started to study effects in insect cells and the role of polyadenylation inhibitors in the infection of insects by fungi. Our work has potential applications in the treatment of inflammatory diseases, cancer and crop protection.

Our funding currently comes from the BBSRC and Arthritis Research UK.

Memberships of Committees and Professional Bodies

  • Member of the RNA Society
  • Member of the Biochemical Society
  • Member of the editorial board of FEBS Open Bio

Pain Centre Versus Arthritis

Clinical Sciences Building
City Hospital
Nottingham, NG5 1PB

telephone: +44 (0) 115 823 1766 ext 31766
fax: +44 (0) 115 823 1757