Jette Lengefeld research group

The failure to regenerate tissue with age is a major health issue. A contributor to this decline is the loss of stem cell function. Despite the essential role of stem cells, it is still unclear how they fail to maintain their functions during ageing and disease.

We discovered a new aspect of stem cell ageing in vivo: cellular enlargement. With age and damage, stem cells increase in size causing their functional decline. However, we are only beginning to understand how size impacts stem cell fitness and the physiological importance of this process remains unsolved.

My team addresses these fascinating questions:

  • What pathways cause stem cell dysfunction during their enlargement?
    We use blood (hematopoietic) stem cells of mouse models to identify the molecular mechanisms impairing fitness of large stem cells from a metabolic perspective.
  • Can we rejuvenate stem cells after aging and damage?
    We explore approaches to rejuvenate stem cells and investigate the effects on cellular ageing and organismal health.
  • Does deregulation of size lead to cancer?
    We utilize blood stem cells from mice and humans to identify factors that facilitate leukaemia in vivo and to investigate the underlying mechanisms.

Jette Lengefeld
University Researcher
Institute of Biotechnology, HiLIFE

Biocenter 2
P.O.Box 56 (Viikinkaari 5 D)
00014 University of Helsinki


Jette is an Assistant Professor of Cell Biology at HiLIFE and Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences. He is affiliated also with BI where her laboratory is located. She holds a position of Academy Research Fellow a term of 1 September 2021 - 31 August 2026. She also holds a position in Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.