Martin Group: inflammation in tissue repair and cancer
We model wound healing in several genetically tractable model organisms from the fruit fly, Drosophila, through to zebrafish and mice, with the ultimate goal of uncovering fundamental mechanisms that will enable development of wound healing therapeutics for human patients. We know that inflammation causes fibrosis and is also aberrant in chronic wounds and so we use Drosophila and translucent zebrafish models to make movies of leukocyte migration into the wound and to dissect the genetics of inflammatory cell recruitment towards tissue damage and its consequences. In Drosophila and mice we have used various approaches to identify re-epithelialisation genes and those associated with wound inflammation, in the hope that these might lead us towards therapeutic targets for kick-starting chronic wounds, and blocking inflammation-driven fibrosis, respectively.
Recently we have become interested also in exploring the parallels between wound healing and cancer, in particular investigating how the wound inflammatory response (as for example, triggered by biopsy or cancer surgery), might impact on immune cell recruitment to nearby transformed cells and what might be the downstream consequences of this.
If you want to know more about us after scanning our website, or maybe you want to join us as a PhD student or post-doc, then please get in touch and/or come visit us in Bristol (also home of Aardman Animations, Banksy and many other cool folk).