Senior Research Fellow - Dr Gary Loughran

Dr Gary Loughran

Dr Gary Loughran

Dr Gary Loughran

Position: Senior Research Fellow

Address: School of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Western Gateway Building 3.94, University College Cork.


Tel: +353 (0)21 420 5446

Gary graduated (Biochemistry) from Queen’s University Belfast in 1995 and then completed his graduate studies (D.Phil) in Biochemistry at the University of Oxford under the supervision of Dr Julian D. Gross and Professor Peter C. Newell, where he used the recently developed technique of mRNA Differential Display to identify developmentally regulated genes from the multicellular model organism Dictyostelium discoideum.  He then joined the Department of Biochemistry at UCC in 1998 as a Post-doctoral researcher in Dr (now Professor) Rosemary O’Connor’s lab where he made cDNA microarrays from mouse fibroblasts derived from Insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R) knock-out mice. This study identified several genes regulated by the IGF-1R pathway that are still under investigation today by researchers in the O’Connor lab. 

In 2004, Gary joined Professor John F. Atkins Recoding lab where he has worked on several aspects of protein synthesis including the control of start codon selection in eukaryotes, overlapping genes in cardioviruses and screening for antivirals against Foot and Mouth disease virus by targeting the unusual virus-specific translation event termed StopGo or Stop Carry-on.


Loughran G, Zhdanov AV, Mikhaylova MS, Rozov FN, Datskevich PN, Kovalchuk SI, Serebryakova MV, Kiniry SJ, Michel AM, O'Connor PBF, Papkovsky DB, Atkins JF, Baranov PV, Shatsky IN, Andreev DE. 2020. Unusually efficient CUG initiation of an overlapping reading frame in POLG mRNA yields novel protein POLGARF. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 Sep 21:202001433. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2001433117. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32958672.

O'Loughlin S, Capece MC, Klimova M, Wills NM, Coakley A, Samatova E, O'Connor PBF, Loughran G, Weissman JS, Baranov PV, Rodnina MV, Puglisi JD, Atkins JF. 2020. Polysomes Bypass a 50-Nucleotide Coding Gap Less Efficiently Than Monosomes Due to Attenuation of a 5' mRNA Stem-Loop and Enhanced Drop-off. J Mol Biol. 2020 Jul 24;432(16):4369-4387. doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2020.05.010. Epub 2020 May 23. PMID: 32454154; PMCID: PMC7245268.

Baclaocos J, Santesmasses D, Mariotti M, Bierła K, Vetick MB, Lynch S, McAllen R, Mackrill JJ, Loughran G, Guigó R, Szpunar J, Copeland PR, Gladyshev VN, Atkins JF. Processive Recoding and Metazoan Evolution of Selenoprotein P: Up to 132 UGAs in Molluscs. J Mol Biol. 2019 Nov 8;431(22):4381-4407. doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2019.08.007. Epub 2019 Aug 20. PMID: 31442478; PMCID: PMC6885538.

Andreev DE, Arnold M, Kiniry SJ, Loughran G, Michel AM, Rachinskii D, Baranov PV. 2018. TASEP modelling provides a parsimonious explanation for the ability of a single uORF to derepress translation during the integrated stress response. Elife. 2018 Jun 22;7. pii: e32563. doi: 10.7554/eLife.32563. PMID: 29932418. 

Ivanov IP, Shin BS, Loughran G, Tzani I, Young-Baird SK, Cao C, Atkins JF, Dever TE. 2018. Polyamine Control of Translation Elongation Regulates Start Site Selection on Antizyme Inhibitor mRNA via Ribosome Queuing. Mol Cell. 2018 Apr 19;70(2):254-264.e6. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2018.03.015. PMID: 29677493. 

Loughran G, Firth AE, Atkins JF, Ivanov IP. 2018. Translational autoregulation of BZW1 and BZW2 expression by modulating the stringency of start codon selection. PLoS One. 2018 Feb 22;13(2):e0192648. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0192648. eCollection 2018. PMID: 29470543.

Andreev DE, Dmitriev SE, Loughran G, Terenin IM, Baranov PV, Shatsky IN. 2018. Translation control of mRNAs encoding mammalian translation initiation factors. Gene. 2018 Apr 20;651:174-182. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2018.02.013. Epub 2018 Feb 4. Review. PMID: 29414693.

Loughran G, Jungreis I, Tzani I, Power M, Dmitriev RI, Ivanov IP, Kellis M, Atkins JF. 2018. Stop codon readthrough generates a C-terminally extended variant of the human vitamin D receptor with reduced calcitriol response. J Biol Chem. 2018 Mar 23;293(12):4434-4444. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M117.818526. Epub 2018 Jan 31. PMID: 29386352.

Yordanova MM, Loughran G, Zhdanov AV, Mariotti M, Kiniry SJ, O'Connor PBF, Andreev DE, Tzani I, Saffert P, Michel AM, Gladyshev VN, Papkovsky DB, Atkins JF, Baranov PV. 2018. AMD1 mRNA employs ribosome stalling as a mechanism for molecular memory formation. Nature. 2018 Jan 18;553(7688):356-360. doi: 10.1038/nature25174. Epub 2018 Jan 3. PMID: 29310120. 

Mariotti M, Shetty S, Baird L, Wu S, Loughran G, Copeland PR, Atkins JF, Howard MT. 2017. Multiple RNA structures affect translation initiation and UGA redefinition efficiency during synthesis of selenoprotein P. Nucleic Acids Res. 2017 Dec 15;45(22):13004-13015. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkx982. PMID: 29069514.

Loughran G, Howard MT, Firth AE, Atkins JF. 2017. Avoidance of reporter assay distortions from fused dual reporters.  RNA. 2017 Aug;23(8):1285-1289. doi: 10.1261/rna.061051.117. Epub 2017 Apr 25. PMID: 28442579.

Andreev DE, O'Connor PB, Loughran G, Dmitriev SE, Baranov PV, Shatsky IN. 2017. Insights into the mechanisms of eukaryotic translation gained with ribosome profiling. Nucleic Acids Res. 2017 Jan 25;45(2):513-526. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkw1190.

Atkins JF, Loughran G, Baranov PV. 2017. A [Cu]rious Ribosomal Profiling Pattern Leads to the Discovery of Ribosomal Frameshifting in the Synthesis of a Copper Chaperone. Mol Cell. 2017 Jan 19;65(2):203-204. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2017.01.002.

Baranov, P.V. and Loughran, G. 2016. Catch me if you can: trapping scanning ribosomes in their footsteps. Nat Struct Mol Biol 23, 703-704. doi: 10.1038/nsmb.3256.

Atkins, J.F., Loughran, G., Bhatt, P.R., Firth, A.E. and Baranov, P.V. 2016. Ribosomal frameshifting and transcriptional slippage: From genetic steganography and cryptography to adventitious use. Nucleic acids research, doi: 10.1093/nar/gkw530.

Tzani, I., Ivanov, I.P., Andreev, D.E., Dmitriev, R.I., Dean, K.A., Baranov, P.V., Atkins, J.F. and Loughran, G. 2016. Systematic analysis of the PTEN 5' leader identifies a major AUU initiated proteoform. Open Biol 6, doi: 10.1098/rsob.150203.

Finch, L.K., Ling, R., Napthine, S., Olspert, A., Michiels, T., Lardinois, C., Bell, S., Loughran, G., Brierley, I. and Firth, A.E. 2015. Characterization of Ribosomal Frameshifting in Theiler's Murine Encephalomyelitis Virus. J Virol 89, 8580-8589. doi: 10.1128/JVI.01043-15

G. Loughran, M. Y. Chou, I. P. Ivanov, I. Jungreis, M. Kellis, A. M. Kiran, P. V. Baranov and J. F. Atkins. Evidence of efficient stop codon readthrough in four mammalian genes.  Nucleic Acids Res. 2014; 42: 8928-38. 

G. Loughran, J. E. Libbey, S. Uddowla, M. F. Scallan, M. D. Ryan, R.S. Fujinami, E. Rieder and J. F. Atkins. Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus contrasts with Encephalomyocarditis and Foot-and-Mouth Disease viruses in its functional utilization of the StopGo non-standard translation mechanism. J Gen Virol. 2013; 94: 348-53.

G. Loughran, M. S. Sachs, J. F. Atkins and I. P. Ivanov. Stringency of start codon selection modulates autoregulation of translation initiation factor eIF5. Nucleic Acids Res. 2012;40: 2898-906.

G. Loughran, A. E. Firth and J. F. Atkins. Ribosomal frameshifting into an overlapping gene in the 2B-encoding region of the cardiovirus genome. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U S A. 2011;108: E1111-9.

A. Kiran, G. Loughran, J. J. O'Mahony and P. V. Baranov. Identification of A-to-I RNA editing: dotting the i's in the human transcriptome. Biochemistry (Mosc). 2011; 76: 915-23. Review.

I. P. Ivanov, G. Loughran, M. S. Sachs and J. F. Atkins.  Initiation context modulates autoregulation of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 1 (eIF1).  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 2010;107: 18056-60.

K. M. O'Callaghan, V. Ayllon, J. O'Keeffe, Y. Wang, O. T. Cox, G. Loughran, M. Forgac, and R. O'Connor . Heme-binding protein HRG-1 is induced by insulin-like growth factor I and associates with the vacuolar H+-ATPase to control endosomal pH and receptor trafficking. J. Biol. Chem. 2010; 285: 381-91.

I. P. Ivanov, G. Loughran and J. F. Atkins.  uORFs with unusual translational start codons autoregulate expression of eukaryotic ornithine decarboxylase homologs.  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 2008; 105: 10079-84.

S. Floyd, M.S. Lasorsa, M. Leahy, C. Favre, G. Trigiante, P. Stroebel, A. Marx, G. Loughran, K. O’Callaghan, C. Marobbio, D. J. Slotboom, E. Kunji, F. Palmieri, and R. O’Connor. The Insulin-like Growth Factor-I–mTOR Signaling Pathway Induces the Mitochondrial Pyrimidine Nucleotide Carrier to Promote Cell Growth.  Mol. Biol. Cell. 2007; 18: 3545-55.

J. F. Atkins, N. M. Wills, G. Loughran, C. Y. Wu, K. Parsawar, M. D. Ryan, C. H. Wang and C. C. Nelson.  A case for "StopGo": Reprogramming translation to augment codon meaning of GGN by promoting unconventional termination (Stop) after addition of glycine and then allowing continued translation (Go).  RNA 2007; 13:  803-10.

G. Loughran, M. Huigsloot, P. A. Kiely, L. M. Smith, S. Floyd, V. Ayllon, K. Meerovitch and R. O’Connor. Gene Expression Profiles in cells transformed by over-expression of the IGF-I Receptor.  Oncogene 2005; 24: 6185-93.

G. Loughran, N. Healy, P. A. Kiely, M. Huigsloot, N. L. Kedersha and R. O’Connor. Mystique is a new IGF-I regulated PDZ-LIM domain protein that promotes cell attachment and migration and suppresses anchorage independent growth. Mol. Biol. Cell. 2005; 16: 1811-22.

D. A. Buckley, G. Loughran, G. Murphy, C. Fennelly and R. O’Connor. Identification of an IGF-1R kinase regulatory phosphatase using the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe and a GFP tagged IGF-1R in mammalian cells. Mol. Pathol. 2002; 55: 46-54.

G. Loughran, K. Pinter, P. C. Newell and J. D. Gross.  Identification of STKA-dependent genes in Dictyostelium discoideum.  Differentiation 2000; 66: 71-80.

R. A. Olie, F. Durrieu, S. Cornillon, G. Loughran, J. Gross, W. C. Earnshaw and P. Golstein.  Apparent caspase independence of programmed cell death in Dictyostelium.  Curr. Biol. 1998; 8: 955-58.



Dr Gary Loughran on LinkedIn

Dr Gary Loughran on PubMed

School of Biochemistry and Cell Biology

Scoil na Bithcheimice agus na Cillbhitheolaíochta

University College Cork, Western Road, Cork.