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Personal profile


Dr McKeown's research focuses on cellular interactions occurring within the gastrointestinal tract.   The functioning of this complex organ plays a vital role in maintaining our health, including impacts on the brain.  Sonja is working on uncovering the interactions between the nervous system of the gut and the intestinal lining.  Her research is based in the laboratory of Professor Helen Abud, who specialises in the stem cells of the intestinal lining.  

Dr McKeown teaches extensively in the Developmental Biology major.  She uses her research expertise in the field of developmental biology to develop active learning and practical classes, and integrates transferable skill development across the units she leads and teaches into. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy

Research area keywords

  • Neural crest
  • Developmental Biology
  • Gastrointestinal tract

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or