Edinburgh Cancer Research

Kevin Myant

Colorectal Stem Cell Transformation​

Dr Kevin Myant - CRUK Career Development Fellow

Research in a Nutshell

Tissue stem cells are proposed to be the cell-of-origin of multiple cancer types. Determining the mechanisms important for stem cell transformation and tumour progression are critical for understanding these processes and guiding therapeutic development. My lab investigates stem cell transformation in the colon with the aim of identifying novel pathways that drive it. Growing evidence suggests alternative RNA splicing plays a key tumourigenic role and it dysregulation is common in cancer. We have recently identified a critical role for Rac1 during stem cell transformation, a gene that is hyperactivated via alternative splicing. We have also identified 100s of other aberrant splicing events during tumour initiation leading to the hypothesis that dysregulated RNA splicing is a critical mediator of colorectal stem cell transformation.

We have 3 main questions we aim to answer:

  1. What are the roles of oncogenic splicing factors altered in cancer, and the global changes in RNA splicing driven by them, during tumourigenesis;
  2. With particular focus on Rac1b, what role does differential splicing play in cancer;
  3. Can we identify other novel oncogenic pathways in the colon. 
Kevin Myant group 3.2018


Kevin Myant

Principal Investigator and CRUK Career Development Fellow and UoE Chancellor’s Fellow

Caroline Billard Research Assistant
Patrizia Cammareri Research Fellow
Victoria Gudino PhD Student
Adam Hall Research Fellow
Michela Raponi Research Fellow




  • Dr Farhat Din, IGMM, Edinburgh
  • Prof Malcolm Dunlop, IGMM, Edinburgh
  • Prof Mark Arends, IGMM, Edinburgh
  • Prof George Dickson, Royal Holloway, London
  • Dr Linda Popplewell, Royal Holloway, London
  • Dr Luke Boulter, IGMM, Edinburgh
  • Prof Owen Sansom, Beatson Institute, Glasgow

Partners and Funders (current)

  • Cancer Research UK / Career Development Fellowship / 2016 – 2022 / £1.56M
  • ISSF2 / Strategic Award / 2015 – 2016 / £77k 

Scientific Themes

Colorectal cancer, cancer stem cells, RNA splicing

Technology Expertise

Animal cancer models, ex vivo organoid culture, molecular biology, RNAseq