Research output per year

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Research interests

My lab is undertaking a focussed research programme studying the organisation and function of the early secretory pathway in mammalian cells. My current research focuses on the function, regulation and organisation of the early secretory pathway. A particular focus of this work is to define how and why mammalian cells are organized in the way that they are; our work seeks to define how intracellular patterning underlies function, and more importantly dysfunction, in human disease. More recently, our interests have evolved to include the traffciking of proteins to and within cilia. In this context we have been working to understand the composition and function of the cytoplasmic dynein-2 motor and its relationship to the formation and function of primary cilia.

The core technical basis of our work is multidimensional live cell imaging and I have considerable experience in the application of wide-field and confocal techniques to the study of living cells. Our work is focussed on the generation and maintenance of the organisation of the pathway, how it is coordinated with cytoskeleton and motor protein function, and how these processes are regulated by protein phosphorylation. In particular, my lab is investigating the functional organisation of ER-to-Golgi transport with specific reference to the macromolecular coat protein complexes, COPI and COPII. Several of the projects in my lab are of direct clinical relevance and we are constantly developing our capabilities, recently including zebrafish genetics and electron microscopy (including immunogold labelling of ultrathin cryosections and tomography).

Our latest work develops our findings from cell biology assays into more physiological contexts including multicellular systems (e.g. cysts grown in 3D matrix) and zebrafish development. These systems form the core approach to our ongoing work which aims to develop our knowledge of COPII-dependent secretion with cell and tissue morphogenesis as well as provide stronger relevance to human disease.

Lab website https://cellbiology.blogs.bristol.ac.uk/

External positions

Council member, BBSRC

Editor, The Company of Biologists

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where David J Stephens is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 2 Similar Profiles

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.


Research Output

ER-to-Golgi trafficking of procollagen in the absence of large carriers

McCaughey, J., Stevenson, N. L., Cross, S. & Stephens, D. J., 4 Mar 2019, In : Journal of Cell Biology. 218, 3, p. 929-948 20 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Open Access
  • 14 Citations (Scopus)
    256 Downloads (Pure)

    ER-to-Golgi Transport: A Sizeable Problem

    McCaughey, J. & Stephens, D. J., 1 Dec 2019, In : Trends in Cell Biology. 29, 12, p. 940-953 14 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article (Academic Journal)

  • 4 Citations (Scopus)

    TFG Promotes Organization of Transitional ER and Efficient Collagen Secretion

    McCaughey, J., Miller, V. J., Stevenson, N., Brown, A., Budnik, A., Heesom, K., Alibhai, D. R. & Stephens, D., 24 May 2016, In : Cell Reports. 15, 8, p. 1648-59 12 p., 15.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
  • 28 Citations (Scopus)
    370 Downloads (Pure)


    BBSRC (External organisation)

    David Stephens (Chair)


    Activity: Membership typesMembership or peer review panel or committee

    BBSRC (External organisation)

    David Stephens (Chair)

    2015 → …

    Activity: Membership typesMembership or peer review panel or committee

    Journal of Cell Science (Journal)

    David Stephens (Editor)

    2015 → …

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activity