Octopus Group Leader
(01235) 567034
RAL R92,G.17

​​​Octopus Group Leader

​Research Interests 

Defining the patterns of structural conformation, association, activation and signal transduction for the four members of the Human Epithelial Growth Factor Receptor family (HER1-4); determination of the conformation and the interactions leading to deregulated cell signalling. Deriving models of ligand-induced behaviour exploiting combined single molecule and ensemble FLIM analysis and systems predictions. Establishing how this is influenced by feed-back loops and internal and external perturbations, e.g. HER mutations (seen in human subjects), receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) inhibitors (RTKIs) and function-blocking antibodies.

Method Developments

Single particle imaging. Super-resolution imaging - e.g. STORM and Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging with Photobleaching (FLImP). Cryo-STORM, SuperSIL technology, and cryo-CLEM.


PhD in Biophysics. University of Keele. Thesis title: The molecular structure and function of striated frog muscle: X-ray diffraction studies with synchrotron radiation.

Marisa joined the LSF i​n 2008. Her research is geared to understanding the intricate network signalling behaviour of cells in their physiological environments within tissues. The aim is describing the basic molecular ingredients, the signalling pathways and the supramolecular structural and spatio-temporal rules regulating signalling outcomes. Methods employed include multi-dimensional and multi-colour single molecule fluorescence imaging, single pair and ensemble FRET and polarisation in conjunction with the modelling of behaviour at atomic resolution within a mathematical framework.

Awards & Honors & Esteemed Positions

Visiting Professor, Faculty of Life Science and Medicine, Kings College London​

UKRI Individual Merit Research Fellow

Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology​

Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry​

Recent Grant Funding

BB/G006911/1- Supra-molecular rules in signalling networks: A single molecule comparative study in cells and tissues (£2,144,604)

BB/L014327/1 - A sharper light from gSTED microscopy on biological structure and molecular interactions (£702,045)

MR/K015591/1 - A super-resolution multi-scale in vitro and in vivo imaging platform at Harwell (£1,700,000)

ST/R006431/1 - An automated macromolecular structure-based approach to personalised anti-cancer therapy (£535,466)

Publications (link)​