Rebecca Casterton

Pathway 0+3.5

Cohort 2018

Pathway Journey

My research investigates a novel mechanism of cell death in neurons, called karyoptosis, which is linked to both autophagy and the structural integrity of the nucleus membrane.?
In particular, I am trying to understand whether karyoptosis occurs in a form of ALS/FTD arising from a mutation in the C9orf72 gene, and to do this I am working with fruitflies, neuronal cells in culture and human post mortem brain tissue samples.


I did my BSc in Neuroscience here at King’s College London. I then completed the MRes Brain Sciences at UCL, where I carried out an 8-month research project at the Queen’s Square Institute of Neurology, investigating small vessel disease and vascular dementia in a rodent model.??
I am also passionate about advocating for equality in STEM and working towards a future where people of all different lived experiences are equally respected, represented and supported so that they can thrive as researchers. I founded the staff & student intersectional equality network ‘Women of the Wohl’ here at King’s, which has been actively running since 2018. Outside of my PhD and work at King’s, I also co-host, edit and produce ‘The Academinist‘, a podcast on equality and feminism in STEM.


‘Pathomechanism Heterogeneity in the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Frontotemporal?Dementia Disease Spectrum: Providing Focus Through the Lens of Autophagy’, Casterton, R.L., Hunt, R.J. & Fanto, M. (2020) Journal of Molecular Biology, 432 (8), 2692-2713?,


King’s IoPPN Education Award 2020 – student-nominated awards to recognise staff/PhD students delivering excellent teaching and supervision of students at King’s IoPPN faculty.


‘Karyoptosis: cell death by degeneration of nuclear integrity in C9orf72 ALS/FTD’ – Presentation at the 2019 Gordon Research Conference on ALS and Related Motor Neuron Diseases, Vermont USA

Social Media

Twitter: @r_casterton