Dr Jo-Anne Johnson

Senior Lecturer in Child and Family Health

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


Location: Chelmsford

Research Supervision:Yes

Jo-Anne is a paediatrician with a sub-speciality interest in respiratory paediatrics. She is the child and family lead for the MBChB course at the School of Medicine. 


Jo-Anne completed a Wellcome Trust-funded PhD in respiratory developmental biology at the University of Cambridge in 2018. During her PhD she was an Associate Lecturer on the Medical Science BSc course as well as Physicians Associate MSc and Midwifery BSc and MSc courses at Anglia Ruskin University. She currently teaches embryology and genetics on the MBChB course at Anglia Ruskin University which links in with her clinical and research interests. Jo-Anne is also the lead for the child and family at the School of Medicine. Clinically, she practices as a Paediatrician at Colchester Hospital where she is the lead for Paediatric sleep medicine.

Research interests

  • Ciliogenesis
  • Stem cell fate decision-making
  • Transcriptional reprogramming
  • Ambulatory sleep studies in children
  • Cystic-fibrosis

In 2009 Jo-Anne was awarded a Research Fellowship in Translational Medicine from the Biomedical Research Centre, University of Cambridge. She worked with Professor Sir John Gurdon (winner of Nobel Prize in Medicine 2012) at the Gurdon Institute, University of Cambridge on developing a technique for monitoring pluripotency gene transcription in real time during nuclear reprogramming.

Following this she secured a very highly competitive Clinical Research Training Fellowship from the Wellcome Trust and under the co-supervision of Professor Sir John Gurdon and Dr Emma Rawlins, focused on factors governing stem cell fate in airway epithelium.

Since going back to clinical medicine, Jo-Anne is researching ways of optimising and standardising the way obstructive sleep apnoea is diagnosed in children in the ambulatory setting.


  • PhD (University of Cambridge, Dept of Pathology) November 2018
  • MRCPCH June 2006
  • MBChB - 1996-2001, University of Leeds, UK

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health

Selected recent publications

Johnson JA, Watson JK, Nikolić MZ, Rawlins EL. Fank1 and Jazf1 promote multiciliated celldifferentiation in the mouse airway epithelium. Biol Open. 2018 Apr 16;7(4). pii: bio033944. doi: 10.1242/bio.033944.

Marko Z. Nikolić, Oriol Caritg, Quitz Jeng, Jo-Anne Johnson, Dawei Sun, Kate J. Howell, Jane L. Brady, Usua Laresgoiti, George Allen, Matthias Zilbauer, Adam Giangreco, Emma L. Rawlins, Human embryonic lung epithelial tips are multipotent progenitors that can be expanded in vitro as long-term self-renewing organoids. ELife. 2017 Jun 30;6. pii: e26575. doi: 10.7554/eLife.26575.

Correia LL, Johnson JA, McErlean P, Bauer J, Farah H, Rassl DM, Rintoul RC, Sethi T, Lavender P, Rawlins EL, Littlewood TD, Evan GI, McCaughan FM. SOX2 Drives Bronchial Dysplasia in a Novel Organotypic Model of Early Human Squamous Lung Cancer. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2017 Feb 15.

Balasooriya GI, Johnson JA, Basson MA, Rawlins EL. An FGFR1-SPRY2 Signalling Axis Limits Basal Cell Proliferation in the Steady-State Airway Epithelium. Dev Cell. 2016 Apr 4;37(1):85-97

Johnson JA, Bush A, Buchdahl R. Does presenting with meconium ileus affect the prognosis of children with cystic fibrosis? Pediatr Pulmonol. 2010 Oct;45(10):951-8.