1984 …2020

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Personal Statement


1993-2001 Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow

2014 Laurens van Deenen Lecture (awarded by ICBL for out-standing and long-term contributions to lipid research)

2018 Fellowship Royal Society of Biology


SIPBS Roles & Responsibilities:

Director of Equality & Diversity


Research interests (in collaboration with Nigel Pyne)

  • Sphingosine 1-phosphate signalling in health and disease - at a cellular level (cell division, migration, survival) in model cell lines; in vascular function (e.g. regulation of vascular tone, cardioprotection); in disease (e.g. cancer of the breast, prostate, colon etc.).
  • Isoform diversity, regulation and spatial signalling involving sphingosine kinases
  • Isoform diversity and regulation of lipid phosphate phosphatases

Sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) is a biologically active lipid that acts as both an agonist and as an intracellular second messenger. It is key to a number of important physiological processes including formation of blood vessels, migration of immune cells, vascular permeability etc. It is formed by sphingosine kinase-catalysed phosphorylation of sphingosine whereas S1P removal is either by dephosphorylation, which may involve lipid phosphate phosphatases, or cleavage by S1P lyase.

The overall aim of research in the laboratory is to understand the molecular mechanisms by which S1P affects cell function in health and disease.

We make use of molecular, biochemical, cellular biological techniques together with disease models and patient biopsy samples.

Recent research in this laboratory has received support from the British Heart Foundation, Scottish Universities Life Sciences Alliance (SULSA), Cancer Research UK (and WeCan), Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.

Expressions of interest in joining the research activity of the lab are always welcome.

Teaching Activity: lectures, workshops and tutorials to undergraduates of the BSc, MSci  (both in various biological sciences) and MPharm (pharmacy) teaching programmes. Instruction of laboratory based research projects at both undergraduate and postgraduate (MSc, MRes, PhD) level.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Birmingham

Bachelor of Science, University of Nottingham

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Research Output

Sphingosine kinase 1 regulates the survival of breast cancer stem cells and non-stem breast cancer cells by suppression of STAT1

Hii, L-W., Chung, F. F-L., Mai, C. W., Yee, Z. Y., Chan, H. H., Raja, V. J., Dephoure, N. E., Pyne, N. J., Pyne, S. & Leong, C-O., 4 Apr 2020, In : Cells. 9, 4, 25 p., 886.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
  • Sphingosine kinases as druggable targets

    Pyne, S., Adams, D. R. & Pyne, N. J., 25 Apr 2020, Lipid Signaling in Human Diseases: Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology. Gomez-Cambronero, J. & Frohman, M. A. (eds.). Cham, Switzerland, Vol. 259. p. 49-76 28 p.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

  • 4 Citations (Scopus)


    Identification of sphingosine 1-phosphate receptors in exosomes released from breast cancer cells

    Author: El Buri, A. H. A., 14 Sep 2018

    Supervisor: Pyne, S. (Supervisor) & Pyne, N. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    2014 Laurens van Deenen Lecture

    Susan Pyne (Recipient), 23 Jun 2014

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)


    Susan Pyne (Recipient), 2018

    Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively


    Tenovus Scotland (External organisation)

    Susan Pyne (Chair)
    Apr 2020 → …

    Activity: Membership typesMembership of committee

    Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (External organisation)

    Susan Pyne (Advisor)

    Activity: Membership typesMembership of committee