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Welcome to the Basson lab at King's College London

Our research is aimed at understanding the signalling mechanisms that control morphogenesis of complex structures and organs in the developing embryo and newborn

Signalling and morphogenesis

All organs in the body originate from relatively simple structures in the embryo. For example a simple epithelial tube, the neural tube, develops into the highly complex brain. The many forces and growth factors that act upon embryonic tissues are precisely coordinated to shape the morphogenesis of more complex structures.

We are interested in the role intracellular regulators of specific signalling pathways play during organogenesis. Many cell surface receptors use reversible tyrosine phosphorylation as a means of signal transduction. Studies have suggested that these signalling pathways are not merely ON/OFF switches but that subtle differences in signal strength and duration often result in profoundly different outcomes.

The broad aim of our research is to understand how intracellular signalling regulators of the Sprouty family are employed to coordinate organogenesis. Recent observations suggest that these genes may also play key roles in controlling organ and tissue maintenance by regulating MAPK signalling in fibroblasts and stem cells.


Our lab is now affiliated with the MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology [1]

Publications in press

Thum, T., Gross, C., Fiedler, J., Fischer, T., Kissler, S., Bussen, M., Galuppo, P., Just, J., Rottbauer, W., Frantz, S., Castoldi, M., Soutschek, J., Koteliansky, V., Rosenwald, A., Basson, M.A., Licht, J.D., Pena, J.T.R., Muckenthaler, M., Tuschl, T., Martin, G.R., Bauersachs, J. & Engelhardt, S. (2008) MicroRNA-21 derepresses fibroblast MAP kinase signaling and contributes to myocardial disease. Nature (doi:10.1038/nature07511).

Rozen, E.J., Schmidt, H., Dolcet, X., Basson, M.A., Jain, S. & Encinas, M. (2009) Loss of Sprouty1 rescues renal agenesis in Ret knockin mice lacking tyrosine 1062. J. Amer. Soc. Nephrol. In press.