Dr Paul Genever




2013 - Reader Department of Biology, University of York
2008 - 2013 Senior lecturer Department of Biology, University of York
2003 - 2008 Lecturer Department of Biology, University of York
1993 - 2003 ARC Non-Clinical Career Development Fellowship Department of Biology, University of York
1996 - 1999 Post-Doctoral RA Department of Biology, University of York
1993 - 1996 Post-Doctoral RA Department of Biology, Brunel University, West London
1993 PhD Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Leeds
1989 - 1990 Research Officer Department of Chemical Carcinogenesis, Institute of Cancer Research, London
1989 BSc Biochemistry/ Physiology University of Leeds



Our work is focused on identifying cellular and molecular pathways that regulate differentiated tissue function, primarily in skeletal systems (bone, cartilage, marrow). This requires an understanding of the fundamental signalling mechanisms that determine adult stem cell fate, tissue remodelling, repair and regeneration and how to apply this knowledge to tissue engineering approaches and the treatment of human disease conditions (orthobiologics).


We discovered that the Wnt signalling cascade plays a fundamental role in bone remodelling, influencing both bone resorption and formation. We have identified and characterised several new tissue sources of adult stem cells and are applying these to tissue engineering approaches.


  • Design of an optimal cryopreservation protocol for human embryonic stem cells (joint with Prof. David Pegg and Dr. Charles Hunt, UK Stem Cell Bank) (Funding body: MRC)
  • Generation of three dimensional tissue structures with targeted gene deletions (Funding body: Dr. Hadwen Trust)
  • Regulation of mesenchymal stem cell activity in an in vitro model of the stem cell niche (Funding body: BBSRC/Smith and Nephew)
  • Examination of the Wnt signalling pathway during osteogenesis in embryonic and mesenchymal stem cells (Funding body: DFG Fellowship awarded to Dr Tatjana Schilling)
  • Role of FGF signalling in mesenchymal differentiation (Funding body: BBSRC)
  • Wnt signalling in the maintenance of the haematopoietic stem cell niche (Funding body: MRC)
  • Modulators of Wnt signalling in mesenchymal stem cells (Funding body: BBSRC/AtraZeneca)
  • Tissue Engineering of a Functional Vertebral Endplate Construct (Funding body: EPSRC, Joint with Leeds)
  • Towards tissue engineering a joint replacement (Funding body: EPSRC, Joint with Leeds)
  • Development of a novel osteochondral construct ( Funding body: RegeNer8)

Research group(s)

Post Doctoral Research Assistant James Fox Understanding the interactions between stem cells and their environment
Post Doctoral Research Assistant Rebecca Pennock Rejuvenation of mesenchymal stem cells for authentic cartilage regeneration in osteoarthritis
E-TERM Landscape Fellowship Amanda Barnes Collagen and PNIPAM hydrogels: An Injectable Solution to Repair the Knee
PhD student Alice Carstairs 3D gene knockout tissue models using adult human stem cells
PhD student (Joint with Yvette Hancock, Physics) Raquel de Almeida Rocha Ponzoni Raman spectroscopy studies of multipotent stromal cell differentiation for bone engineering
PhD student (Joint with the Department of Physics and Leeds Dental Institute) Sam Hollings Effect of Strontium Incorporation on the Gene Expression of MSCs on Glass-Ceramic Scaffolds
PhD student (with Smith & Nephew) Paul Souter Molecular and cellular mechanisms of antimicrobials on osteoblasts and osteoclasts
Visiting PhD student (Joint with Kenneth Dalgarno at Newcastle University) Kimberley Smith Novel Scaffolds to Support the Rejuvenation of Aged Cells for OA Therapy
PhD student David Kuntin Optimised HA-coating strategies fro MSC osteogenesis
PhD student (Joint with Harv Isaacs) Michael King Role of Capicua in development
PhD student (Joint with Andrew Webster) Ruchi Higham An analysis of the design of clinical trials in regenerative medicine

Available PhD research projects

Analysis of mesenchymal stromal/stem cell sub-populations. (2015-16)

Human mesenchymal stromal/stem cells (MSCs) are found in adult tissues such as bone marrow and are able to differentiate into osteogenic, chondrogenic and adipogenic tissues. There is intense interest in determining how MSCs may be used in future cell-based therapies, including gene therapy, immunotherapy and tissue engineering, and as in vitro models for fundamental research and drug discovery. However, little is known about MSC identity and research is often performed on heterogeneous mixtures of different MSC sub-populations. Using a process of telomerase-based immortalisation and cell cloning, we have generated several different MSC lines that represent different “types” of MSCs. For example, some MSC lines demonstrate tri-lineage, whereas other are bi-potent, uni-potent or nulli-potent. This project will examine the differentiation characteristics of these MSC lines to determine how they reflect MSC sub-populations in vivo.

Dr Paul Genever

Contact details

Dr Paul Genever
Department of Biology (Area 9)
University of York
YO10 5DD

Tel: 01904 328649