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Kathryn E. Hamilton, PhD
Kathryn E. Hamilton

Dr. Hamilton studies intestinal epithelial cells and how they help maintain human health. Although there is a great deal understood about how these cells function, little is known about how they behave during disease. Dr. Hamilton focuses on defining new mechanisms in regenerative medicine, inflammatory bowel disease, and colorectal cancer.



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Dr. Hamilton's research program specializes in understanding mechanisms regulating gut homeostasis in health and disease, with a specific interest in epithelial cell responses to damage and inflammation. She employs in vivo models and primary, 3D enteroid and colonoid cultures from mice and humans to understand the molecular basis of intestinal regeneration, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and colorectal cancer.

Within these contexts, one area Dr. Hamilton and her lab focus upon is how RNA binding proteins impart global, post-transcriptional regulation of key pathways in normal physiology and pathophysiology.

Among her notable accomplishments to date, Dr. Hamilton:

  • Identified some of the first-known in vivo roles for RNA binding protein IMP1 in colorectal cancer models, demonstrating context-specific oncogenic and tumor suppressive roles
  • Generated one of the first large banks of 3D, human tissue-derived enteroids and colonoids (“mini-guts”) from pediatric patients with IBD, including patients with very early onset (VEO)-IBD


Education and Training

BA, Assumption College (Biology/Biotechnology), 2003

PhD, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (Cell and Molecular Physiology), 2010

Fellowship, University of Pennsylvania (Gastroenterology, Tumor Biology), 2013

Titles and Academic Titles


Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Professional Memberships

American Physiological Society, 2009-

American Gastroenterological Association, 2012-

American Association of Cancer Research, 2013-

Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America, 2014-

American Society for Investigative Pathology, 2014-

Professional Awards

North Carolina Impact Award, University of North Carolina Graduate Education Advancement Board, 2010

American Gastroenterological Association Research Foundation Horizon Pharma Fellow Abstract Prize, 2012

Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America Career Development Award, 2014

American Society for Integrative Pathology Research Award, 2015

American Gastroenterological Association Women’s Leadership Conference, 2016

Publication Highlights