Dr Erin Greaves
Research interests and grants.
6. Greaves E, Collins F, Esnal A, Giakoumelou S, Horne AW, Saunders PT. Estrogen receptor (ER) agonists differentially regulate neuroangiogenesis in peritoneal endometriosis via the repellent factor SLIT3. Endocrinology, 155, 4015-26 (2014).
Endometriosis is a chronic oestrogen-dependent inflammatory disease that affects 6-10% of women of reproductive age. It is associated with debilitating pelvic pain, painful periods, and pain during sexual intercourse. It has a significant impact on health-related quality of life and has been estimated to cost the UK £11.7 billion per year. Current treatment strategies for endometriosis are restricted to surgical excision of the lesions or suppression of ovarian function to mimic a premature menopause. In up to 75% of cases, symptoms recur after surgery, and long-term ovarian suppression is often ineffective, suppresses fertility and has unwelcome side effects. There is an unmet clinical need for new treatments for endometriosis.
Endometriosis is the growth of the lining of the uterus (endometrium) on areas outside the uterus, typically the lining of the pelvic cavity (peritoneum). The pain associated with endometriosis is believed to be a result of the growth of new small diameter nerve fibres into the ectopic tissue (endometriosis lesions). We hypothesise that macrophages play a critical role in promoting nerve fibre growth into lesions and activating these nerve fibres thus contributing to endometriosis-associated pain.
The main aims of the research group are:
- To characterise the origin and activation state of macrophages present within endometriosis lesions
- To determine how macrophages promote nerve growth into lesions and to understand how macrophages activate nerve fibres and contribute to endometriosis-associated pain
- To determine how macrophages contribute to central sensitisation and hyperalgesia in endometriosis
- To identify new therapeutic targets for endometriosis-associated pain
We hope to shed new light on disease processes that cause endometriosis-associated pain and to contribute to the development of new therapies that may help improve the quality of life for millions of women that suffer from this chronic condition.
MRC Project Grant, ‘Identifying disease promoting macrophages and tissue-identity in endometriosis’, E Greaves (PI), Stephen Jenkins, Andrew Horne, Philippa Saunders,£692,262 (Nov 2018- Dec 2021)
Endometriosis Foundation of America, 'A single cell discovery project to compare mouse models of endometriosis and shed light on different theories for the etiology of endometriosis’, E Greaves (PI), $25,000 (2018-2019)
Royal Society International Exchanges Cost Share (Taiwan), ‘Using ribosome biogenesis as a therapeutic target for treating endometriosis and the associated complications’, E Greaves (PI), Jim Jinn-Chyuan Sheu, £12,000 (2018-2020)
Rosetree’s Trust Research Grant, ‘Macrophage-derived insulin-like growth factor-1: (IGF-1): a key mediator of endometriosis-associated pain? E Greaves (PI), £40,000 (2018-2020)
- Edinburgh Cellular Genomics Consortium pump-priming competition for single cell transcriptomics, £15,000 (2017 - 2018)
- Wellbeing of Women Project Grant, ‘Novel repurposing of anticancer drugs to treat endometriosis'. AW Horne (PI), PTK Saunders, P Fowler, C Becker, D Hapangama, K Zondervan, S Sundar, MC Jones, E Greaves, £198,864 (2016 - 2018 )
- MRC MICA, ‘CB2 agonists as a novel treatment for women with endometriosisassociated pain’. PTK Saunders (PI), AW Horne, E Greaves, £302,097 (2016 - 2018)
- European Commission Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE) Call: H2020-MSCA-RISE-2015 ‘MOMENDO’ (January 2016-December 2020) Co-I with colleagues from Edinburgh, Germany, Sweden, Argentina and Chile
- The Carnegie Trust Research Incentives Grant ‘Defining the neurogenic signature of the endometriosis-associated macrophage’ £7217 (January 2016-December 2016)
- MRC Career Development Award ‘Neuroinflammation in endometriosis; macrophages behaving badly? £1,164,455 (January 2015-December 2019)
- Royal Society International Exchange Scheme £3000 (January-March 2015)
- Society for Endocrinology Practical Skills Grant £2000 (January-March 2015)
- Society for Endocrinology Early Career Grant £9360 (2013-2014)
- Moray Endowment Fund £2000 (2013)
- MRC Centenary Fund £10800 (2013)
- Dr Ashley Dorning, Postdoc
- Chloe Hogg, PhD student
- Professor Philippa Saunders (Centre for Inflammation Research)
- Professor Andrew Horne (Centre for Reproductive Health)
- Dr Brett McKinnon (Bern, Switzerland)
- Professor Sue Fleetwood-Walker (Centre for Integrative Physiology)
- Dr Louise Hull (University of Adelaide)
- Professor Sarah Robertson (University of Adelaide)
- Dr Sylvia Mechsner (Charité, Berlin)
- Ferring Pharmaceutics – collaboration