Behrens lab Adult Stem Cell Laboratory

3D imaging of pancreas hyperplasia

We are studying how stem cells regenerate to repair the body and how faulty stem cells can lead to cancer. 

Every part of the body contains stem cells that carry on multiplying throughout life, making new cells to repair damaged or dead cells to keep us healthy. But cancer can also start from faulty stem cells multiplying out of control.

We are studying stem cells in great detail, using mice and cells grown in the lab, to understand how they work in healthy tissues and what happens when they go wrong.

We want to discover the genes and molecules that control normal stem cells and find out how they maintain a balance between making new stem cells and creating more specialised cells. And we are investigating how faulty stem cells can drive the growth of tumours, which could lead to new ways to prevent or treat cancer.