Developmental Biology and Stem Cells
Oxford University has a long tradition in the study of developmental biology and stem cells. Current research areas include understanding the basic molecular and cell biological principles that guide early embryonic development including formation of the primary embryonic body axes, studying the movement of cells and molecules by sophisticated real time imaging technology, and the identification of growth factor signalling pathways controlling cell commitment and differentiation.
Multiple model organisms are used including worms, Drosophila, zebrafish and mice. Areas of strength in the stem cell field include hematopoiesis, cardiac and neural stem cells, the generation of disease-specific induced pluripotent stem cell lines and a growing interest in the field of cancer stem cells. The Oxford Stem Cell Institute (OSCI) serves to foster collaboration between 41 laboratories distributed throughout 17 Departments of the University. Both basic research and clinical Departments are represented within the OSCI, providing significant opportunities for translational research. Regular term-time seminar series sponsored by the Jenkinson fund and the OSCI facilitate interactions between research groups. In addition, one-day symposia on Developmental Biology and on Stem Cell Research are held each year to facilitate networking between groups.