Dr Alice Lapthorn

Research Fellow

Medical Technology Research Centre

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care

School:Allied Health

Location: Chelmsford

Alice is a Research Fellow in the ARU's Drug Discovery Group, part of the Medical Technology Research Centre (MTRC). Her research focusses on identifying novel drugs that can prevent severe scarring of the skin.



Alice obtained her BSc in Biomedical Science from Queen Mary, University of London, where her final year research project investigated the role of PI3K signalling in Crohn’s & Colitis.

Following this, she started her PhD in 2017 at ARU, where her research focussed on using phenotypic screening to identify novel medicines to prevent hypertrophic scar formation. This project has led to a patent for the repurposing of a drug for hypertrophic scarring.

Now a postdoctoral researcher, Alice is continuing her work in fibrotic skin disorders with the aim to develop and establish an in vitro 3D skin model to further test the drug identified from her PhD work. As part of this, she is continuing her collaboration with St. Andrew’s Centre for Plastic Surgery and Burns.

Alice is now working on developing new phenotypic screening assays for other fibrotic disorders, in particular abdominal adhesions, a project in collaboration with Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.

Research interests

  • Fibroproliferative disorders
  • Phenotypic drug discovery
  • Hypertrophic and keloid scarring
  • Wound healing
  • Intestinal fibrosis


  • PhD Medical Science, Anglia Ruskin University (2021)
  • BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science, Queen Mary, University of London (2017)

Memberships, editorial boards

  • British Pharmacological Society, member since 2018

Recent presentations and conferences

Lapthorn, A., 2021. Using phenotypic screening to identify novel treatments for fibrotic disorders. British Society of Matrix Biology Spring Meeting (online).

Lapthorn, A., 2021. High-throughput screening reveals 90 hits that can inhibit myofibroblast transformation in an in vitro model of dermal scarring. British Society for Investigative Dermatology Annual Meeting (online).

Lapthorn, A., 2020. Screening of 1,954 FDA-approved drugs reveals 90 hits with anti-myofibroblast activity using an in vitro model of cutaneous scarring. British Pharmacological Society Annual Meeting, Pharmacology 2020 (online).

Lapthorn, A., 2019. Development of a high-throughput, cell-based phenotypic assay to identify novel anti-fibrotic medicines to prevent scar formation after burn injury. Society for Investigative Dermatology Annual Meeting (Chicago, USA).