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Title: Dr
First Name: Gemma
Surname: Barron
Position: Research Fellow
Telephone: +44 (0)1224 263154
Linkedin: LinkedIn Icon

Dr Barron is a Lecturer and Research Fellow at the School of Pharmacy and Life Sciences.

Her key research interests include angiogenesis at the cellular/molecular level, cancer therapeutics and diagnostics; and the effect of natural products on cancer.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences at the School of Pharmacy and Life Sciences
  • Research Fellow in the Centre of Obesity Research and Education (CORE)

Academic Background

Dr Barron’s qualifications include a PhD in Medicinal Biochemistry (2010) and First Class BSc Honours degree in Forensic Science (2006) both from Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen. She moved to the University of Dundee (2010-2013) to undertake post doctoral research on a FP7-SME funded project investigating the early detection of cancer using photonic crystals lasers (EDOCAL) in vitro (skin, brain, bladder and oesophageal cancer cell lines).

She then moved back to Robert Gordon University (2013-present) as a Research Fellow in the Institute of Health and Wellbeing Research. In September 2015, she joined the School of Pharmacy and Life Sciences as a Part-Time Lecturer and Part-Time Research Fellow within the Centre for Obesity Research and Education (CORE).

Research Interests

Dr Barron’s key research interests include:

  • Angiogenesis at the cellular/molecular level 
  • Cancer therapeutics: DNA damage and repair
  • Cancer diagnostics: Biomarkers in disease
  • Effect of natural products on cancer

She is a Reviewer for several journals including Scientific Reports, British Journal of Nutrition and Lasers in Medical Science. She is also on the Biological and Medical Sciences panel as a Reviewer for Research Links Travel Grants for the British Council and the Newton Fund.

She has also been actively involved in Public Science Engagement events all over the UK. She is also an Early Career Network Representative for Aberdeen and the North of Scotland (Royal Society of Chemistry) and a STEM Ambassador.   She is also taking part in ‘I’m a Scientist Get me out of here’ in November 2015.  

Current Research

Dr Barron’s recent projects focus on:

  • Investigating the link between cytokines/adipokines, angiogenesis and cancer progression
  • Determining the mechanisms of action of rapeseed pomace in breast cancer
  • Detecting and characterising novel regenerative cells to treat fatty liver disease
  • Novel anticancer agents and breast cancer


  • 2014: Friends of Anchor Research Project for ‘Rapeseed pomace extract and its anti-cancer properties: a study of the molecular mechanisms of action’. Co-applicant with Goua M (PI), Bermano G and Kong Thoo Lin P. Awarded £9,000 for 18 months.
  • 2014: £585 travel grant received from Biochemical Society and Institute for Health and Wellbeing Research, for registration, travel and accommodation to Angiogenesis and Vascular Remodelling: New Perspectives conference in Chester, UK.
  • 2013: Institute of Health and Wellbeing Research PhD studentship ‘Targeting histone deacetylase enzymes with novel bisnaphthalimidopropyl derivatives as alternative cancer therapies’. Co-applicant with Goua M (PI), Bermano G and Kong Thoo Lin P. £60,000 for 36 months.
  • 2013: Institute of Health and Wellbeing Research Pump Priming of Pilot Projects for ‘Modelling obesity: Characterisation of the interaction between macrophages and an angiogenesis cell model in vitro.’ £1,850 for 6 months.
  • 2012: £600 travel grant received from British Medical Laser Association, for registration and accommodation to Laser Europe 2012 in London, UK.

Professional Memberships

  • Member of the Royal Society of Biology (MRSB)
  • Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry (MRSC)
  • Early Career Member of the Biochemical Society

External / Professional Roles

Dr Barron is a member of the European Society of Photobiology and a member of the Scottish Skin Biology Club.


  1. Barron GA, Goua M, Kuraoka I, Bermano G, Iwai S, Kong Thoo Lin P. Bisnaphthalimidopropyl diaminodicyclohexylmethane induces DNA damage and repair instability in triple negative breast cancer cells via p21 expression. Chemico-Biological Interactions, 2015;242:307-315. doi:10.1016/j.cbi.2015.10.017 
  2. Barron GA, Bordet E, Goua M, Bermano G. Modulation of angiogenesis by inflammatory markers and the role of matrix metalloproteinases in an endothelial cell/fibroblast co-culture system. Current Angiogenesis, 2014;3(3):152-163. doi:10.2174/2211552803666141113211829 
  3. Barron GA, Valentine R, Moseley H, Brancaleon L, Hill C, Woods JA. Porphyrin profile in four human cell lines after supplementation with 5-aminolaevulinic acid and its methyl ester. Photodiagnosis and Photodynamic Therapy, 2013;10:654-663. doi:10.1016/j.pdpdt.2013.08.004
  4. Barron GA, Moseley H and Woods JA. Differential sensitivity in cell lines to photodynamic therapy in combination with ABCG2 inhibition. Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology 2013;126:87-96. doi:10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2013.07.003
  5. Lima RT, Barron GA, Grabowska JA, Bermano G, Kaur S, Roy N et al. Cytotoxicity and cell death mechanisms induced by a novel bisnaphthalimidopropyl derivative against the NCI-H460 non-small lung cancer cell line. Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry 2013;13:414-421. doi:10.2174/1871520611313030005
  6. Barron GA, Bermano G, Gordon A, Kong Thoo Lin P. Synthesis, cytotoxicity and DNA-binding of novel bisnaphthalimidopropyl derivatives in breast cancer MDA-MB-231 

Published Abstracts

  1. Barron G, Woods J, Moseley H. The effect of ABCG2 transporter inhibition and ferrochelatase activity on PDT efficacy: an in-vitro study. Lasers in Medical Science. 2012;27(5):857
  2. Lima RT, Barron G, Grabowska JA, Bermano G, Kaur S, Roy N et al.Bisnaphthalimidopropyl derivatives as Antitumor Agents – Targeting SIRT2. European Journal of Cancer 2012;48(S5):S243