Professor Sir Ian Wilmut

Professor Emeritus
MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine


My objective is to understand key regulatory mechanisms during early embryo development and to use that knowledge to establish new approaches to the study of inherited human diseases. The nuclear transfer techniques in animals established that complete reprogramming of an adult somatic cell nucleus is possible, but a rare event. Furthermore these methods have not been extended to humans. By understanding the molecular events that are involved it may be possible either to increase the efficiency significantly or to establish methods for reprogramming cells from adults without making an embryo. Either of these methods for producing embryo stem cells from patients would provide important new opportunities to study inherited diseases such as ALS with the longer term aim of developing new treatments.

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