Who We Are, What We Study, and How We Study It

Warhol yeast cells
gold yeast bkg
Arrestins in cardiac myocytes merge
Yeast images WT vs rsp5 mut

The O’Donnell lab is located in the Department of Biology at the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. Our research focuses on the arrestin family of protein trafficking adaptors, that includes the widely-conserved but relatively unstudied α-arrestins. Work from our lab and others has shown that α-arrestins, like β-arrestins, regulate G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling. However, our studies further define a role for α-arrestins in unexpected trafficking pathways, including endosomal recycling and clathrin-independent endocytosis. We use to a combination of molecular, biochemical, genetic and advanced microscopy methods to define the molecular mechanisms underlying α-arrestin-mediated trafficking. Answering fundamental questions about arrestin function in yeast will expand our understanding of GPCR signaling and protein trafficking. As all of the α-arrestin-interacting partners identified in yeast are conserved in mammals, it is likely that analogous pathways exist in other eukaryotes. We are currently applying insights gained in our yeast model to initiate studies on the relatively unstudied mammalian α-arrestins.

Meet the Team

Allyson F. O'Donnell, Ph.D.
Dr. O'Donnell is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. She is also a member of the American Society for Cell Biology, Center for Protein Conformational Disease, and a mentor for the Science Research outreach program at Taylor Allderdice High School.
O'Donnell Lab Members
Including Graduate, Undergraduate, High School, Staff, and Former Lab Members
Join Us!
Interested in working with us in the lab or as a student? Find out more on how to join our team here.


University of Pittsburgh


Room A312 Langley Hall, 

5th & Ruskin
Pittsburgh, PA 15260


Phone: 412.648.4289


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Warhol yeast cells