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Research Fellows Directory

Sarah Woolner

Dr Sarah Woolner

Research Fellow


University of Manchester

Research summary

The tissues of our bodies are extremely complicated at the cellular level, comprising different types of cells arranged with precise geometry. Within this complex system, the direction in which a cell divides is a crucial tool used to shape and organise tissues. Defective orientation has lethal consequences: in embryos tissues and organs fail to form properly, and in adults it is associated with the development of cancer. Therefore, it is vital that we understand precisely how cell division orie ntation is controlled. Whilst we do know that the positioning of a cellular structure called the mitotic spindle determines the orientation of cell division, we still don't fully understand what determines the orientation of the mitotic spindle. Here, based on previous evidence, I hypothesise that the mechanical forces which act on cells, such as for example stretching forces exerted by other cells or by their environment, can direct the orientation of the mitotic spindle. I propose a series of experiments to test th

Grants awarded

Mitotic spindle orientation and the mechanical tissue environment.

Scheme: Sir Henry Dale Fellowship

Dates: Aug 2012 - Aug 2017

Value: £858,726