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Centre for Trophoblast Research


Macrophages are immune cells found in all tissues, with key roles in the maintenance of homeostasis and in defence from infection. A population of macrophages, called Hofbauer cells, are found in the human placenta, yet little is known about these cells. During my PhD I aim to characterise the functions and origins of Hofbauer cells in the first trimester of human pregnancy. This work will hopefully help provide insights into how the fetal immune system develops during pregnancy, and why only a select group of pathogens can cross the placenta to cause congenital disease.


Key publications: 

Thomas, J.R, Appios, A., Zhao, X. X., Dutkiewicz, R. A., Donde, M. J., Lee, C.Y.C., Naidu, P., Lee, C., Cerveria, J., Liu, B., Ginhoux,F., Burton, G., Hamilton, R.S, Moffett, A., Sharkey, A., McGovern, N. (2020). Phenotypic and functional characterization of first trimester human placental macrophages, Hofbauer cells. Journal of Experimental Medicine, 218(1). DOI: 10.1084/JEM.20200891.

Graduate Student, Pathology
Not available for consultancy