Fiona Watt

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Stem Cells researcher

Fiona Watt is a scientist, born in the UK in 1956.

She is internationally known for describing the control mechanisms for the renewal of epidermal stem cells, cell differentiation and aggregation. She is also known for her discoveries on how the mechanisms which regulate these processes disappear in diseased cells.

Fiona knew that she wanted to be a scientist from a very early age. She even had her own lab coat with which she pretended to be a scientist playing with her chemistry set.

Her main focus of interest in research is the role of stem cells in the maintenance of adult tissue. Some of her current projects deal with self-regulation and selection of epidermal stem cell lineages in mouses and humans, the role of stem cells in oral and epidermal tumors, and the characteristics of mesenchymal skin cells. Fiona's laboratory also studies epidermal tumors, their various sequences of cellular signalling and oncogenic mutations.

From 2006 to 2012 Fiona held the position of Deputy Director at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute and Deputy Director of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Stem Cell Research of the University of Cambridge. In September 2012, she moved to King's College London to take up the post of Director of the Centre for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine.

Fiona has received the EMBO Women in Science Award. He is a member of the Royal Society, the Academy of Medical Sciences and the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO).

«I think there’s really no right time to have kids. I would feel very sad if women scientists were somehow being robbed of their fertility because they were waiting so long to have kids when the time is right.»