About Me

I am a PhD Researcher in the Weavers Lab, Department of Biochemistry at The University of Bristol. I am currently investigating the molecular mechanisms that drive tissue resilience and effective wound repair.

I completed my undergraduate studies at The University of Sheffield, where I gained a keen interest in the evolution, development and diversity of animal form.

After graduating with a first class degree in Biology, I moved to the Somorjai Lab at The University of St Andrews to investigate gene duplications and tissue regeneration in amphioxus for my MSc(Res). During my time in St Andrews I became fascinated by the complex molecular mechanisms regulating regeneration and wound repair. Realising I would need a new experimental workhorse to dissect these mechanisms, I moved to The Weavers Lab in Bristol, entering the wonderful world of Drosophila.



  • Holcombe J and Weavers H (2022) – ‘The role of preconditioning in the development of resilience: mechanistic insights’ – Current Opinion in Toxicology
  • Burbridge K*, Holcombe J* and Weavers H (2021) – ‘Metabolically active and polyploid renal tissues rely on graded cytoprotection to drive developmental and homeostatic stress resilience’ – Development (* these authors contributed equally)

What We Do

Our bodies are under constant threat from both exogenous and endogenous insults. Exposure to UV radiation or inhalation of pollutant aerosols, for example, can lead to the generation of highly reactive molecules (such as reactive oxygen species) that create a destructive and stressful environment for our tissues (e.g. oxidative stress). Similarly, highly metabolically demanding biological processes (e.g. renal function) and inflammatory responses to events such as wounding also generate damaging conditions. In order to deal with this barrage of toxic insults we have evolved a sophisticated armoury of cytoprotective pathways that repair resultant damage and ensure continued biological function.

We aim to further explore this cytoprotective network, the molecular mechanisms underlying its function along with identify novel constituent pathways of the network. To do this, we utilise live imaging techniques and genetic approaches with the highly tractable Drosophila model system.

Where to find me

Probably stood under a rock somewhere. Alternatively:

  • Jack.Holcombe@Bristol.ac.uk