Microtubule organisation during gut organoid morphogenesis

Lead Research Organisation: University of East Anglia
Department Name: Biological Sciences


Polarisation and differentiation of columnar epithelial cells is critical for normal gut function and defects in polarisation lead to loss of gut barrier function, epithelial cell invasion and cancer. Importantly, polarised elongation of epithelial cells is dependent on microtubule reorganisation into apico-basal arrays. However, the molecules and mechanisms responsible for this remain to be determined. The aims of this PhD studentship are to use 3D in vitro gut organoids that mimic in vivo gut development to study the role of novel microtubule assocciated proteins in the generation, stability and function of apico-basal microtubule arrays during epithelial differentiation. GFP, RNAi and CRISPR/Cas9 technology in conjunction with live time-lapse, confocal, multiphoton, super-resolution and electron microscopy will be used to pursue these aims. This study presents an exciting opportunity to elucidate the molecular mechanisms responsible for microtubule reorganisation that underpins epithelial differentiation and tissue formation and function.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/M011216/1 01/10/2015 30/09/2023
1800048 Studentship BB/M011216/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2020 Benjamin Rix
Description Hosting high school students thinking about going to college. This included theory of research and lab tours. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact A tour of the lab and imaging facilities was done including the imaging of cells on a confocal microscope.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017