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Heidi Hehnly

Heidi Hehnly

Assistant Professor
Department of Biology

236 Life Sciences Complex

Research Interests

Our research interests include understanding the interface between cytoskeletal dynamics and membrane transport and defining how they co-regulate one another to control essential cellular processes such as cell division, fate, and polarity. 


  • Visiting Scientist, University of Washington, Seattle (2014-15)
  • Postdoc, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester Mass (2010-14)
  • Ph.D., University of Iowa, Iowa City IA (2003-2009)
  • B.S., University of Rochester, Rochester NY (1999-2003)

Previous Academic Appointments

  • Assistant Professor, SUNY Upstate Medical College, Syracuse, NY (2015-2018)

Selected Publications

  • Colicino EG, Stevens K, Curtis E, Rathbun L, Bates M, Manikas J, Amack J, Freshour J, Hehnly H. Chromosome misalignment is associated with PLK1 activity at cenexin-positive mitotic centrosomes. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 2019. PMID:31042116 (*Awarded Cover) Read article.
  • Dao TP, Martyniak B, Canning AJ, Lei Y, Colicino EG, Cosgrove MS, Hehnly H, Castañeda CA. ALS-Linked Mutations Affect UBQLN2 Oligomerization and Phase Separation in a Position- and Amino Acid-Dependent Manner. Structure. 2019. Read article.
  • Dao TP, Kolaitis RM, Kim HJ, O'Donovan K, Martyniak B, Colicino E, Hehnly H, Taylor JP, Castañeda CA. Ubiquitin Modulates Liquid-Liquid Phase Separation of UBQLN2 via Disruption of Multivalent Interactions. Molecular Cell. 2018. Read article.
  • Colicino EG, Garrastegui AM, Freshour J, Santra P, Post DE, Kotula L, Hehnly H. Gravin regulates centrosome function through PLK1. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 2018. Read article.
  • Taneja N, Fenix AM, Rathbun L, Millis BA, Tyska MJ, Hehnly H, Burnette DT. Focal adhesions control cleavage furrow shape and spindle tilt during mitosis. Scientific Reports 2016. Read article.
  • Vertii A, Ivshina M, Zimmerman W, Hehnly H, Kant S, Doxsey S. The Centrosome Undergoes Plk1-Independent Interphase Maturation during Inflammation and Mediates Cytokine Release. Developmental Cell 2016. Read article.
  • Hung H, Hehnly H¥, Doxsey S¥. The mother centriole protein, cenexin, modulates symmetric lumen formation through spindle orientation. Current Biology 2016 (¥) depicts co-corresponding author. Read article.
  • Hehnly H*, Canton D*, Bucko P, Langeberg LK, Ogier L, Gelman I, Santana LF, Wordeman L, Scott JD. An Aurora A-Plk1 kinase scaffold depleted in testicular seminomas impacts mitotic spindle orientation in germline stem cells. eLIFE. 2015 depicts co-first authorship. Read article.
  • Elisa de Souza E, Hehnly H, Perez AM, Vaz Meirelles G, Costa Smetana JH, Doxsey S, Kobarg J., Human Nek7-interactor RGS2 is required for mitotic spindle organization. Cell Cycle. 2015 Feb 9:0. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 25664600. Read article.
  • Chen CT*, Hehnly H*, Yu Q*, Farkas D, Zheng G, Redick SD, Hung HF, Samtani R, Jurczyk A, Akbarian S, Wise C, Jackson A, Bober M, Guo Y, Lo C, Doxsey S. A unique set of centrosome proteins requires pericentrin for spindle-pole localization and spindle orientation. Current Biology. 2014 2014 Oct 6;24(19):2327-34. PMID: 25220058 depicts co-first authorship *Current Biology Commentary titled Pericentrin: critical for spindle orientation.”. Read article.
  • Hehnly H and Doxsey S, Rab11 endosomes contribute to mitotic spindle organization and orientation. Developmental Cell. 2014 Mar 10;28(5):497-507. PMID: 24561039 *Awarded Cover Image. *Developmental Cell Commentary titled “Spindlegate: the biological consequences of disrupting traffic.”. Read article.
  • Hehnly H, Chen CT, Powers C, Lui HL, and Doxsey S, The Centrosome regulates the Rab11-dependent recycling endosome pathway at appendages of the mother centriole. Current Biology. 2012 Oct 23; 22(20):1944-50. PMID: 22981775 *Featured in Faculty 1000 *Featured in Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology. Read article.
  • Hehnly H, Xu W, Chen J, and Stamnes M (2010) Cdc42 regulates microtubule-dependent Golgi positioning. Traffic. 11(8): 1067-78; PMID: 20525016 *Awarded Cover Image. Read article.
  • Hehnly H, Longhini K, Chen J, and Stamnes M (2009) Retrograde Shiga toxin trafficking is regulated by ARHGAP21 and Cdc42. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 20(20):4303-12 PMID: 19692570. Read article.
  • Hehnly H, Sheff D, Stamnes M (2006) Shiga toxin facilitates its retrograde transport by modifying microtubule dynamics. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 17(10): p.4379-89 PMID: 16885418. Read article.