Show/hide main menu

Hughes Group

Professor Simon M Hughes

  Image of Professor Simon Hughes

Professor of Developmental Cell Biology
Medical Research Council Career Scientist

Randall Division of Cell and Molecular Biophysics
and MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology
3rd floor North New Hunt’s House
Guy’s Campus

King’s College London
London SE1 1UL, UK

Tel: 44 (0)20 7848 6445
Fax: 44 (0)20 7848 6435


  • BA (Cantab) 1980 Biochemistry
  • MPhil 1981 (Cantab) Calcium signalling
  • PhD 1984 (Cantab) Visual transduction
  • Postdoc 1985-87 UCL, Prof. Martin Raff
  • Postdoc 1988-91 Stanford, Prof. Helen Blau
  • Visiting Scientist 1992 Stanford, Genetics Dept
  • MRC Muscle and Cell Motility Unit, KCL 1992-2002 MRC Scientist
  • MRC External Scientific Staff, KCL 2002- MRC Scientist

Current responsibilities

  • Board Member of Faculty of 1000 2002 - current
  • Editorial Board BMC Developmental Biology 2004 - current
  • Editorial Board PLoS Biology 2012-present
  • Editorial Board Developmental Biology 2014-present

Research summary

We want to understand the patterning, growth, adaptation and repair of striated muscle. We have identified molecular pathways regulating the patterning of muscle tissue in the embryo and influencing muscle adaptation in the adult. Recent work has revealed new steps in myogenesis, which we are pursuing by in vivo imaging in zebrafish and molecular genetics in amniotes: we aim to understand the cell biology of development in vivo.


  • Attili, S. and S.M. Hughes (2014) Anaesthetic tricaine acts preferentially on neural voltage-gated sodium channels and fails to block directly evoked muscle contraction. PLoS one 9, 8, e103751.
  • Ganassi, M., Badodi, S., Polacchini, A., Baruffaldi, F., Battini; Hughes, S.M., *Hinits, Y. and S. *Molinari. (2014) Distinct functions of alternatively spliced isoforms encoded by zebrafish mef2ca and mef2cb. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1839: 559-570. doi: 10.1016/j.bbagrm.2014.05.003. PMID: 24844180.
  • Yogev, O., Williams, V.C., Hinits, Y. and S.M. Hughes (2013) eIF4EP3L acts as a gatekeeper of TORC1 in activity-dependent muscle growth by regulating Mef2ca translational initiation. PLOS Biology. 11(10):e1001679. PMID: 24143132
  • Pascoal, S., Esteves de Lima, J., Leslie, J.D., Hughes, S.M. and L. Saúde. (2013) Notch signalling is required for the formation of structurally stable muscle fibres in zebrafish. PLOS ONE 8 (6):e68021. PMID: 23840804
  • Minchin, J.E.N., Williams, V.C., Hinits, Y., Low, S-H., Tandon, P., Fan, C-M., Rawls, J.F.and S.M. Hughes (2013) Oesophageal and sternohyal muscle fibres are novel Pax3-dependent migratory somite derivatives essential for ingestion. Development. 140: in press.
  • *Anderson, C., *Williams, V.C., Moyon, B., Daubas, P., Tajbakhsh, S., Buckingham, M.E., Shiroishi, T., Hughes, S.M. and A-G. Borycki (2012) Sonic hedgehog acts cell-autonomously on muscle precursor cells to generate limb muscle diversity. Genes Dev. 26:2103-17. PMID: 22987640
  • Hinits, Y., Pan, L., Walker, C., Dowd, J., Moens, C.B. and S.M. Hughes (2012) Zebrafish Mef2ca and Mef2cb are essential for both first and second heart field cardiomyocyte differentiation. Dev Biol. 369:199-210. PMID: 22750409
  • Madhala-Levy, D., Williams, V.C., Hughes, S.M.., Reshef, R. and Halevy, O. (2012) Cooperation between Shh and IGF-I in Promoting Myogenic Proliferation and Differentiation via the MAPK/ERK and PI3K/Akt Pathways Requires Smo Activity. J. Cell. Physiol. 227:1455-64 PMID: 21618536
  • Hinits, Y., Williams, V.C., Sweetman, D., Donn, T.M., Ma, T.P., Moens, C.B. and S.M. Hughes (2011) Defective cranial skeletal development, larval lethality and haploinsufficiency in Myod mutant zebrafish. Devel. Biol. 358: 102-112. PMID: 21798255
  • *Osborn, D.P., *Li, K., *Hinits, Y. and S.M. Hughes (2011) Cdkn1c drives muscle differentiation through a positive feedback loop with Myod. Devel. Biol. 350: 464-75. PMID: 21147088
  • *Hinits, Y., *Osborn, D.P.S. and S. M. Hughes (2009) Differential requirements for myogenic regulatory factors distinguish medial and lateral somitic, cranial and fin muscle fibre populations. Development. 136: 403-414.
  • Henriquez, J-P.. *Webb, A., Bence, M., Bildsoe, H., Sahores, M., Hughes, S.M. and P.C. Salinas (2008) Wnt signalling promotes AChR aggregation at the neuromuscular synapse in collaboration with Agrin. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 105: 18812-18817.
  • Maggs, A.M., Huxley, C. and S.M. Hughes (2008) Nerve-dependent changes in skeletal muscle myosin heavy chain after experimental denervation, cross-reinnervation and in a demyelinating mouse model of Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 1A. Muscle Nerve. 38: 1572–1584,
  • Minchin, J.E..M. and S. M. Hughes (2008) Sequential actions of Pax3 and Pax7 drive xanthophore development in zebrafish neural crest Devel. Biol. 317: 508-522.
  • Diogo, R., Hinits, Y. and S.M. Hughes (2008) Development of mandibular, hyoid and hypobranchial muscles in the zebrafish: homologies and evolution of these muscles within bony fishes and tetrapods. BMC Devel. Biol. 8: 24.
  • Chargé, S.B., *Brack, A.S.,Bayol, S.A. and S.M. Hughes (2008) MyoD- and nerve-dependent maintenance of MyoD expression in mature muscle fibres acts through the DRR/PRR element. BMC Devel. Biol. 8: 5.
  • Böhm, S., Jin, H., Hughes, S.M., Roberts, R.G. and Y. Hinits (2008) Dystrobrevin and dystrophin family gene expression in zebrafish. Gene Expression Patterns. 8: 71-78.
  • Mann, C.J., Osborn, D.P.S. and S.M. Hughes (2007) Vestigial-like-2b (VITO-1b) and Tead-3a (Tef-5a) expression in zebrafish skeletal muscle, brain and notochord. Gene Expression Patterns. 7:827-83.
  • Hinits, Y. and S.M. Hughes (2007) Mef2s are required for thick filament formation in nascent muscle fibers. Development. 134: 2511-2519.
  • Jin H., *Tan S., Hermanowski J., Böhm S., Pacheco S., McCauley J.M., Greener M.J., Hinits Y., Hughes S.M., Sharpe P.T. and R.G. Roberts (2007) The dystrophin, dystrobrevin and dystrotelin superfamily: new paralogues and old isoforms. BMC Genomics 8: 19.
  • Hammond, C.L., Hinits, Y., Osborn, D.P.S., Minchin, J.E.N., Tettamanti, G. and S.M. Hughes (2007). Signals and myogenic regulatory factors restrict pax3 and pax7 expression to dermomyotome-like tissue in zebrafish. Devel. Biol. 302: 504-521.
  • Devoto, S.H., *Stoiber, W., *Hammond, C.L., Steinbacher, P., Haslett, J.R., Barresi, M.J.F., Patterson, S.E., Adiarte, E. and S.M. Hughes (2006) Generality of vertebrate developmental patterns: evidence for a dermomyotome in fish. Evolution Dev. 8: 101-110.
  • Groves, J.A., *Hammond, C.L. and S.M. Hughes (2005) Fgf8 drives myogenic progression of a novel lateral fast muscle fibre population in zebrafish. Development 132: 4211-4222.
  • Lange, S., Xiang, F., Yakovenko, A., Vihola, A., Rostkova, E., Hackman, P., Kristensen, J., Brandmeier, B., Franzen, G., Hedberg, B. et al. (2005). The kinase domain of titin controls muscle gene expression and protein turnover. Science 308:1599-1603.
  • Brack, A.S., Bildsoe, H. and S.M. Hughes. (2005) Evidence that satellite cell decrement contributes to preferential decline in nuclear number from large fibres during murine age-related muscle atrophy J. Cell Sci. 118:4813-4821.
Sitemap Site help Terms and conditions  Privacy policy  Accessibility  Modern slavery statement  Contact us

© 2019 King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS | England | United Kingdom | Tel +44 (0)20 7836 5454