Edinburgh Research Explorer

Matthew Livesey

(Former employee or visitor)

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), University of Dundee
Molecular determinants of single-channel conductance and ion selectivity in cationic Cys-loop receptor channels
Bachelor of Science, University of Edinburgh


Matthew Livesey obtained his PhD in 2009 from the University of Dundee where he worked on structure–function studies of the 5HT3A ligand-gated ion channel. Since 2011 he has worked at the University of Edinburgh, first as a Wellcome Trust-funded postdoctoral researcher and more recently as a Royal Society of Edinburgh Personal Research Fellow. His recent work has focused on the electrophysiological assessment of the functional properties of neurons and glia derived from human pluripotent stem cells.

My research in a nutshell

The human brain continuously sends and receives signals, processing these to control every aspect of our behaviour – from tasks such as breathing and walking to our ability to store and recall memories. Recently, using human stem cell-derived brain cells, my work has focussed on understanding how ‘normal’ human brain cells function. The next step in my research is to assess the extent to which the dysfunction that is observed in certain forms of neurological diseases can be rescued by either repairing the faulty gene that underlies the change in function or by drugs.

Research Interests

My research focuses upon the physiological properties of defined neuronal and glial populations derived from human pluripotent stem cells and specifically those from individuals suffering from neurodevelopmental, neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases.


I contribute to the following courses;


Year 4 (Honours) Pharmacology

Year 3 Neuroscience


M.Sc. (Integrative Neuroscience) Neurodegeneration and Regeneration elective course.



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