Institutional Research Information Service
UCL Logo
Please report any queries concerning the funding data grouped in the sections named "Externally Awarded" or "Internally Disbursed" (shown on the profile page) to your Research Finance Administrator. Your can find your Research Finance Administrator at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/finance/research/post_award/post_award_contacts.php by entering your department
Please report any queries concerning the student data shown on the profile page to:

Email: portico-services@ucl.ac.uk

Help Desk: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/ras/portico/helpdesk
 More search options
Dr Greg Fitzharris
Institute for Women's Health
86-96 Chenies Mews
Tel: 0207 6793285
  • Senior Lecturer
  • Cell & Developmental Biology
  • Div of Biosciences
  • Faculty of Life Sciences
Research Themes
Research Summary
One of the major causes of pregnancy miscarriage is a defect in the woman's egg which means that the egg has too few or too many chromosomes, known as aneuploidy. This defect arises just before the egg is fertilised, when chromosomes which are no longer required by the egg are separated and discarded in a special cell division called meiosis. Errors in this process are thought to occur in about 10-30% of eggs, and become much more likely as the woman gets older. However, it is not known why this is so common in eggs, or why the problem gets worse as women get older. Understanding the molecular mechanisms underpinning chromosome segregation in oocytes will be crucial if we are to understand the extreme susceptibility of the mammalian oocyte to aneuploidy. Central to chromosome segregation in any cell is the spindle, a transient microtubule-based organelle which gathers, sorts and then dispatches chromosomes to daughter cells. Given the pivotal importance of spindle function in oocyte aneuploidy, it is remarkable how little is known about spindle function in mammalian oocytes. We are particularly focussing on motor proteins which organise spindle microtubules. One current area of investigation is on dynein, a microtubule motor which we recently found plays an important role in determining the architecture of the ooplasm during meiosis (FitzHarris et al, Dev Biol, 2007), and is well known to perform several roles in normal somatic cells, including spindle formation, pole focussing, spindle length determination, and chromosome segregation. Another area of study is the Kinesin-13 family of microtubule-depolymeising proteins, which in somatic cells play key roles including averting aneuploidy. By understanding the mechanistic differences in chromosome segregation between oocytes and other cells we expect to uncover clues as the reasons for the extreme susceptibility of the mammalian oocyte to aneuploidy. This work is currently funded by an MRC NIRG.
Academic Background
2003 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Physiology University College London
2000 BSc Bachelor of Science – Physiology and Pharmacology with Basic Medical Sciences University College London
Please report any queries concerning the data shown on this page to https://www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/helpdesk/helpdesk_web_form.php
University College London - Gower Street - London - WC1E 6BT Tel:+44 (0)20 7679 2000

© UCL 1999–2011

Search by