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Institute of Dentistry - Barts and The London

Dr Ines Sequeira, MSc, AFHEA, PhD


Group Leader - Lecturer

Telephone: +44 (0)207 882 7007
Room Number: 1st Floor, Blizard Building


Dr Inês Sequeira was appointed as a Lecturer at the Institute of Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, in 2020. She has been studying stem cell and cancer biology for the past 15 years. Inês obtained her Biology degree at Lisbon University and Université Libre de Bruxelles and moved to Institut Pasteur in Paris to complete her doctoral studies. During her PhD, she worked with a multidisciplinary team to investigate stem cell heterogeneity and behaviour in the hair follicle using clonal analysis, 3D imaging and mathematical modelling, and establishing a novel model to describe stem cell behaviour in the niche during hair regeneration.

In 2014, Inês moved to London and joined the laboratory of Prof Fiona Watt, one of the world-leading labs in skin and stem cell biology, at the Centre for Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine (King’s College London) for her postdoctoral training on cancer biology. There, she developed her line of research using a mouse model for oral cancer (OSCC), establishing methodologies that were entirely new to the lab. During her postdoc, she uncovered a novel immunoregulatory role for Keratin 76 during tumour development. Furthermore, she focused in understanding the genetic and cellular heterogeneity in OSCC, correlating the genetic changes identified by whole exome sequencing with their location, clonal organisation and immune infiltrate changes of individual tumours in order to determine the dynamics of OSCC formation. This analysis opens new avenues to the development of new biomarker testing for early stage mutations, improving early diagnosis and monitoring of oral cancer.

Centre: Oral Immunobiology and Regenerative Medicine


Module Lead: Cellular pathology (Module 7024), MSc Experimental Oral Pathology Lecturer: Extracellular Matrix (Module 7021), MSc Experimental Oral Pathology Awarded Associate Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy.


Research Interests:

Dr Sequeira’s lab is particularly interested in dissecting the molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in oral cancer formation and in understanding the regenerative potential of the oral mucosa, a tissue with rapid and scarless healing when compared to skin. Inês and her team aim to combine experimental and theoretical approaches including cutting-edge imaging with computational modelling to map the cellular interactions, and transcriptomics to uncover intrinsic and extrinsic signals during oral wound healing and tumour formation. This research has broad translational applications: the identification of the microenvironment signatures in scarless tissues will offer an exciting strategy to accelerate wound healing after tumour resection during oral cancer surgical treatment and to improve the quality of life for cancer patients.


  1. Sequeira I, Rashid M, Tomas I, Williams M, Graham T, Adams D, Vigilante A, Watt FM (2020). The genomic landscape and clonal selection of carcinogen-induced mouse oral squamous cell carcinoma. Nature Communications. 
  2. Joost S, Annusver K, Jacob T, Sun X, Sivan U, Dalessandri T, Sequeira I, Sandberg R, Kasper M (2020). The molecular anatomy of mouse skin during hair growth and rest. Cell Stem Cell. doi: 10.1016/j.stem.2020.01.012 
  3. Sequeira I, Watt FM (2019). The role of keratins in modulating carcinogenesis via communication with cells of the immune system. Invited Review for Cell Stress. doi: 10.15698/cst2019.04.184
  4. Sequeira I, Neves JF, Carrero D, Peng Q, Palasz N, Liakath-Ali K, Morgan P, Graham L, Lombardi G, Watt FM (2018). Immunomodulatory role of Keratin 76 in oral and gastric cancer. Nature Communications. doi:10.1038/s41467-018-05872-4
  5. iakath-Ali K, Mills EW, Sequeira I, Lichtenberger BM, Pisco AO, Sipilä KH, Mishra A, Yoshikawa H, Chih-Chien Wu C, Ly T, Lamond A, Adham IM, Green R, Watt FM (2018). An evolutionarily conserved ribosome-rescue pathway maintains epidermal homeostasis. Nature. doi: 10.1038/s41586-018-0032-3