Dr Wei-Yu Lu
Birmingham Fellow | Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy
Where were you previously located?
I was based at the Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Edinburgh. My previous research focused on studying the role of liver stem cell and regeneration. During my time in Edinburgh, I have identified an adult liver progenitor cell population and shown the potential of using adult progenitor cells for future therapies.
What attracted you to the University of Birmingham?
The University of Birmingham has a longstanding excellence in liver research. The strong link between the Centre for Liver and Gastrointestinal Research and the Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy is the perfect environment to pursue my research interest which covers both immunology and liver regeneration. Furthermore, the attractive Birmingham Fellowship Scheme provides me the opportunity to join the University with abundant support to setup my independent research career.
What are you hoping to accomplish while in Birmingham?
I hope I can establish my research group here in Birmingham with the focus on studying the role of adaptive immune response in promoting liver regeneration. In particular, I would like to investigate whether T regulatory cells, a special cell type that is well known for controlling the immune response, can affect the fate of liver stem cells and how this is achieved. These will potentially reveal the mechanisms that determine incomplete tissue repair (scarring) and complete regeneration.
What medical discovery are you hoping will be achieved in your lifetime?
Eventually, I hope there will be a new discoveries that leads to potential therapies by altering both the immune system and the adult stem cell populations to promote complete organ regeneration. This will overcome many challenging situations currently faced in clinical medicine such as organ scarring and the lack of donor organs.
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