Dr. Iosifina Sampson


I joined the University of Leeds as a postdoctoral research fellow in Professor Richard Bayliss lab in November 2017.

I moved to United Kingdom in 2009, where I graduated with a Bsc Biological Sciences and Msc Cancer Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Leicester (2013). Subsequently, I completed my PhD in cancer cell biology in 2017 at the same institution.

Research interests

My main interest focuses in the areas of cell division and cancer signalling pathways.

One part of my research interest is to understand how cancer cells with extra centrosomes divide and what mechanisms they use to cluster them during mitosis. Diploid healthy cells have two copies of centrosomes before they enter mitosis, however, cancer cells often possess more than two. These cancer cells find ways of escaping cell cycle checkpoints, clustering their extra centrosomes and progressing into division by promoting aneuploidy and  chromosomal instability. Kinases, such as Nek6 and microtubule-associated proteins, such as Dynein, seem to implicated in these mechanisms of centrosome clustering in cancer cells, however their mechanisms still remain elusive.

The second part of my research interest focuses on how EML4-ALK fusion implicated in cancer signalling pathways. The fusion of ALK (Anaplastic Lymphoma kinase) and EML4 (echinoderm microtubule associated protein-like 4) identified in about 3-7% of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). To date up to 17 different EML4-ALK isoforms have been found in  patients with NSCLC. A targeted approach with ALK tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) have been proven highly effective in those patients, however, despite the initial responses the outcome of the treatment is variable. I am specifically interested to understand how the two major EML4-ALK isoforms, the V1 and V3a, respond to the ALK TKIs and what downstream signalling pathways they use to overcome these treatments.


  • Bsc Biological Sciences (Leicester)
  • Msc Cancer Cell and Molecular Biology (Leicester)
  • PhD (Leicester)