Lab Members


Dr Naomi Moris

Group Leader

I studied Biological Science at Imperial College London as an undergraduate, and found myself fascinated by developmental biology and how the embryo is able to form a complete organism from a single cell. I went to Cambridge to do a PhD with Cristina Pina and Alfonso Martinez-Arias, looking at mouse embryonic stem cell differentiation. I was particularly interested in gene expression dynamics of single cells and epigenetic regulation of transitions between states. I then moved into 3D models of embryogenesis, using mouse gastruloids as an in vitro system to study multiaxial pattern formation. In 2017 I became a Junior Research Fellow at Newnham College, before starting my own group (2021).

Dr Peter Baillie-Benson

Senior Laboratory Research Scientist

I studied for my PhD in the Martinez Arias lab before working with Professor Jennifer Nichols at the Wellcome-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute on modelling gastrulation in vitro with embryonic stem cells during my first post-doctoral position.

In the Moris lab, I am exploring the early stages of human gastruloid development in which symmetry is broken and the germ layers are specified. I want to better understand the factors regulating these processes and how we can use this knowledge to improve the representation of tissues that are formed.

In my spare time, I enjoy cooking for friends and family, running, cycling and being outdoors. You can use the following links to find me on LinkedIn and Twitter


Dr Jamie Thompson

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

I completed my BSc in Biochemistry at the University of Manchester, during which I undertook an industrial placement year at Boehringer Ingelheim in Vienna, Austria. For my PhD, I moved to the University of Nottingham on the EPSRC Next Generation Biomaterials Discovery program, and was jointly supervised by Cathy Merry and Morgan Alexander. My project focussed on combining human pluripotent stem cells and biomaterials to create defined, 3D culture models to study the role of glycosaminoglycans in human development, and in the developmental disease multiple osteochondroma. I am currently working in the Moris lab to develop 3D models of human somitogeneis, with an aim to broaden our knowledge of human developmental processes, and apply this knowledge to understand developmental diseases. 

You can find me on Twitter and LinkedIn 

Chris Cooke

Visiting PhD Student

I am currently employed by Abcam, plc where I work as a Scientist in the Technology Development team. Through my employer I have been given this amazing opportunity to undertake a PhD with the Martinez-Arias and Moris labs! Here, I am investigating Primordial germ cells - the precursors to the germ cells and gametes (sex cells) of an organism. Firstly, to characterise these intriguing cells and secondly to determine how closely they recapitulate several key features of their in vivo counterparts.

You can find me on LinkedIn


Jesús Cantoral Rebordinos

PhD Student

I completed a BSc in Biochemistry at the Autonomous University of Madrid where I worked in the laboratory of Dr Hugh Reyburn at the Spanish National Centre for Biotechnology. I then moved to the Netherlands to study a MSc in Molecular Life Sciences at Wageningen University. As part of my MSc, I was awarded an Erasmus+ scholarship to work on stromal and cancer immunology in Dr Sophie Acton’s lab at University College London.
I joined the Moris Lab for my PhD where I work with gastruloids to understand the molecular dynamics of human gastrulation. I enjoy both working at the bench and on more computational projects and very much anything that involves learning new techniques, discussing ideas and lab outings.
When I’m not in the lab, I enjoy taking up new hobbies, learning new things and spending time outdoors, cycling and swimming. You can find me on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Lena Bohaumilitzky

Visiting ERASMUS+ Student

Lena will be joining us in September 2021. We can't wait!


We will be looking for enthusiastic new members to join our team, so do get in touch if you might be interested in a PhD, Postdoc or Researcher position!

(Background Artwork by Morgan Harper Nichols)