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Philippa Saunders

Professor of Reproductive Health, The University of Edinburgh

Our studies are directed at understanding the mechanisms responsible for the impact of steroids normal reproductive tissues and disorders associated with reproductive tissue malfunction.

A primary interest of the current research effort is directed at determining how oestrogens and androgens regulate the function of the endometrium (the lining of the womb). We have identified cells that co-express ERalpha and ERbeta (epithelium, stromal fibroblasts), cells that express ERß alone (immune and endothelial cells) and cells that are direct targets for the action of androgens (stromal fibroblasts).

These studies employ a wide variety of molecular and cellular models, genomic analysis and bioinformatics as well as dynamic live cell imaging. We aim to translate our work for patient benefit by determining how steroids regulate tissue regeneration, angiogenesis (formation of blood vessels) and inflammation during the normal menstrual cycle and how their dis-regulation contributes to endometrial disorders such as endometriosis and cancer.


  • –present
    Professor of Reproductive Health, University of Edinburgh