Robert Fordham

Robert Fordham

2009 - 2013

Studentship Details


Dates of Study: Oct 2009 - Sept 2013

Programme: 4-yr Programme in Stem Cell Biology

PhD Supervisor: Dr Roger Pedersen / Dr Kim Jensen

Studentship Sponsor: Medical Research Council

Thesis Title: Maturation of intestinal epithelial progenitors, in vitro and in vivo

Public Outreach: Robert participated in the Cambridge Science Festival in 2010, 2011 and 2012, taking a lead in the organisation of the SCI's exhibit at the 2011 festival.


Post PhD

In January 2014, Robert took up a Postdoctoral Research Fellow position in Professor Owen Sansom's laboratory at The Beatson Institute for Cancer Research, Glasgow.


Legend for right-hand image

Schematic summary of the findings presented in Fordham et al., Cell Stem Cell 2013, and my PhD. We demonstrate that a population of immature progenitors exists in the foetal intestine of mouse and human, that these can be expanded in vitro as three-dimensional Foetal Enterospheres (FEnS), and that these cells can contribute to regeneration of damaged colonic epithelium upon transplantation into adult mice. Furthermore, maturation of immature progenitors can be induced in vitro with Wnt3A.

Schematic summary of the findings presented in Fordham et al., Cell Stem Cell 2013, and my PhD.

Owner: Robert Fordham

Plain English

During my PhD I identified a population of foetal gut stem cells present in both mouse and human development. In collaboration with a laboratory at Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Japan, I showed that these immature cells can contribute to the regeneration of colonic tissue in mice with damaged colons.

Key Publications

  1. Fordham RP, Yui S, Hannan NRF, Soendergaard C, Madgwick A, Schweiger P, Nielsen OH, Vallier L, Pedersen RA, Nakamura T, Watanabe M and Jensen KB. Transplantation of Expanded Fetal Intestinal Progenitors Contributes to Colon Regeneration after Injury. Cell Stem Cell 2013 (in press).
  2. Hannan NRF, Fordham RP, Moignard V, Jensen KB and Vallier L. Generation of multipotent foregut stem cells from human pluripotent stem cells. Stem Cell Reports 2013 (in press).
  3. Fordham RP and Jensen KB (2012). Reporting Live from the Epidermal Stem Cell Compartment! Cell Stem Cell 11(2) 141-2.

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