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About Watt Lab

History of Watt Lab

Fiona Watt obtained her DPhil from the University of Oxford, and carried out her postdoctoral research at M.I.T, Cambridge, USA. She established her first lab at the Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology in London, and then moved to London Research Institute.


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


In 2021 the Centre for Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine (CSCRM) merged with the Centre for Cell and Gene Therapy to become the Centre for Gene Therapy and Regenerative Medicine.


In 2022, Fiona became the director of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany and started a new research group.


Research interests

The major research interest of the Watt Lab is in how the differentiated state of adult tissues is maintained. We study this using mammalian skin as a model system.


Current projects are concerned with self-renewal and lineage selection by human and mouse epidermal stem cells; the role of stem cells in epidermal and oral tumour formation; and the assembly and function of the epidermal cornified envelope.

Cancerous tumour


Featured Research Publications


Please see our Job Opportunities section on the King's College London or EMBL website for details of any vacancies.

UK Government Documentation

  • An update from the Regenerative Medicine Expert Group (of which Fiona is a member), on progress to support the growth of regenerative medicine in the UK, was published on 24th March 2015. It can be downloaded here.

  • Fiona was an expert advisor to the House of Lords Science and Technology Select Committee, which launched an inquiry into regenerative medicine. The 1st Report of Session 2013-14 can be downloaded here.

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