Dr Ann B. Vernallis

Senior Lecturer in Cell Biology

Member of the Pharmacy and Biology Teaching Programmes

School of Life and Health Sciences
Aston University
Aston Triangle
B4 7ET

email:[email protected]
telephone: +44 (0) 121 204 4026
fax: +44 (0) 121 204 3892

Research Group

Cell & Tissue Biomedical Research 

Research Centre

Aston Research Centre for Healthy Ageing (ARCHA) 

Ann B. Vernallis 001
I joined the School of Life & Health Sciences as a Lecturer in 2008. Prior to coming to Aston, I was a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Prof. John K. Heath at the University of Oxford and later at the University of Birmingham. My work focused on cytokines. In particular, I worked on the characterisation of Leukemia Inhibitory Factor Receptor (LIF-R) antagonists.

Before studying cytokines, I studied ion channels in the nervous system. I earned my PhD in the laboratory of Prof. Darwin K. Berg within the neurobiology group of the Biology Department at the University of California at San Diego. My thesis addressed the subunit composition of neuronal nicotinic receptors.

  • Summer student, Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory, Colorado, USA, 1983

  • B.S., Biology (top 5%) Stanford University, Standford, California, USA.

  • PhD., Neurobiology Department of Biology, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA, 1992

  • Professional Certificate in Teaching and Learning Aston University Birmingham, United Kingdom - Accreditation as a Teacher in Higher Education awarded by Staff and Educational Development Association (SEDA), 2000

As of October 2012, I am Programme Director for the BSc programmes in Biology and Biomedical Science and the MBiol. I primarily teach on the Biomedical Sciences and Biology Programmes. In the first year of the undergraduate programmes, I teach Cell Biology and Developmental Biology. In the second year, I teach Endocrinology (signal transduction), Molecular Pathology, and Molecular Genetics (including Bioinformatics). In the final year, I teach options in Cell Biology (including cell culture) and supervise final year projects. I also contribute to the MSc in Biomedical Sciences.

My main interest is in cytokines and other mediators of inflammation. I collaborate with Prof Peter Lambert and others on the host response to bacteria infection and the therapeutic potential of tetracyclines to reduce inflammation.

  • Technology Strategy Board (£372,718)  “Project SABRINA (Sepsis Alert Biomarkers Resolved In a Novel Assay)”, 2012.  Joint project with Mologics Inc, Ig Innovations Inc, Queen Elisabeth Hospital, and Prof. Lambert and Dr. Worthington

  • Alzheimer’s Research Trust (£25,261) “Versatile Stem Cell Model of Alzheimer’s disease”, (2009)  Pilot grant in collaboration with Prof. M. Coleman, Dr. Hill, Dr. Parri, and Dr. Devitt

  • Wyeth (£30,000) "Molecular characterisation of the anti-inflammatory activity of tigecycline compared to other tetracyclines", 2008. Joint project with Prof. Lambert and Prof. Griffiths.

Mr. Christopher Dunston, 'Anti-inflammatory effects of tetracyclines: a proteomic approach' (2008).

  • Society of Biology
  • Higher Education Academy (Fellow)
  • International Cytokine Society

  • Biochemical Society

  • British Society for Cell Biology

Recent Publications