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Professor Lynne Cox

MA, PhD Camb

I am a biogerontologist at the University of Oxford, am the George Moody Fellow at Oriel, and am Principal Investigator of the lab of Ageing and Cell Senescence at the Department of Biochemistry.

My lab researches the molecular biology of basic ageing processes, aiming to understand the underlying biological changes are responsible for age-related poor health and multimorbidity. I have a special interest in premature ageing Werner syndrome, for which we have developed new lab-based models including a proof-of-concept correction of the molecular defect. In addition, we have a long running study of cell senescence, a state whereby cells that have been damaged or stressed (or simply undergone many cell divisions) change to a state that can damage surrounding tissues. We are also conducting experiments to identify possible new treatments both for Werner syndrome and more generally in ageing to prevent the harm caused by senescent cells. We are very fortunate to be supported by the Mellon Longevity Science Programme in Oriel, funded by philanthropist and Orielensis Jim Mellon, to study senescence of the immune system, which has enormous implications for the health of people as they age especially in the context of the COVID pandemic.

In Oxford, I co-run the Oxford Ageing Network, am on the strategy group of the Ageing Research Collaborative Hub, and am senior member of the student Society of Ageing and Longevity. I also co-chair of the EU Geriatric Medicine Society special interest group on ageing biology, and sit on the strategic advisory board of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Longevity. I have co-authored the APPG’s National strategy report on “Health of the Nation” launched by the Secretary of State of Health and Social Care.

Within Oriel, I give tutorials in molecular and cell biology aspects of the MBiochem course. Within the Biochemistry Department, I have been course organiser for the Genetics and Molecular Biology paper for many years, as well as lecturing on DNA replication and molecular biology techniques to 2nd and 3rd years. I am designing a new course on Ageing Biology for the new MBiochem course, and will continue to teach replication and techniques in a combination of lectures, workshops and practical classes. I also lead practical classes for First year preclinical medicine.

Research Interests

For more information about my research see: and

For information on publications, awards, positions held etc, see

Selected Publications

Recent Articles
  • Lynne S Cox and Janet M Lord (2021) Targeting ageing cells improves survival on coronavirus infection. Science, in press (issue 16th July 2021).
  • Lynne S Cox, Ilaria Bellantuono, Janet M Lord, Elizabeth Sapey, Joan B Mannick, Linda Partridge, Adam L Gordon, Claire J Steves, Miles D Witham (2020) Tackling immunosenescence to improve COVID-19 outcomes and vaccine response in older adults. The Lancet Healthy Longevity Volume 1 Number 2 e55.
  • Walters, H and Cox, LS (2021) Intercellular transfer of mitochondria between senescent cells through cytoskeleton-supported intercellular bridges requires mTOR and Cdc42 signalling. Oxid Med and Cellular Longevity (in press).
  • Rolt, AC and Cox, LS (2020) Structural basis of the anti-ageing effects of polyphenolics – mitigation of oxidative stress. BMC Chemistry, Volume 14, Article number: 50 (2020).
  • Cox, LS. (2020) The Economic and Scientific Case for Therapeutic Intervention in Ageing. Key paper I (p72-80) inHealth of the Nation: a Strategy for Healthier Longer Lives”,  report of the APPG for Longevity, launched 12th February 2020,


  • Cox, L and Goljanek-Whysall, K (2019) Ageing here and now: current research and transformative therapies. Biogerontology 20: 249.
  • Rolt, ACR, Nair, A and Cox, LS (2019) Optimisation of a screening platform for determining IL-6 associated inflammatory signalling in the senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP). Biogerontology
  • Walters, HA and Cox, LS (2019) Generation of a novel model of primary human cell senescence through Tenovin-6 mediated inhibition of sirtuins. Biogerontology
  • Walters, HW and Cox, LS (2018) mTORC Inhibitors as Broad-Spectrum Therapeutics for Age-Related Diseases Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Aug 8;19(8). pii: E2325. doi: 10.3390/ijms19082325.
  • Chennuri, P, Cox, LS and Saunders, RDC. (2018) EXD2 and WRN exonucleases are required for interstrand crosslink repair in Drosophila. Preprint doi:
  • Cox, LS, Mason PA. (2018) Towards understanding the biological drivers of cell ageing. Chapter 8 in The New Dynamics of ageing, volume 2. Ed Walker, A. Policy Press (Bristol) ISBN 978-1-4473-1479-0.
  • Latorre E, Birar VC, Sheerin AN, Jeynes JCC, Hooper A, Dawe HR, Melzer D, Cox LS, Faragher RGA, Ostler EL, Harries LW. (2017) Small molecule modulation of splicing factor expression is associated with rescue from cellular senescence. BMC Cell Biol. 2017 Oct 17;18(1):31. doi: 10.1186/s12860-017-0147-7.
  • Cox, LS and Redman C. (2017) The role of cellular senescence in ageing of the placenta Placenta. 2017 Apr;52:139-145. doi: 10.1016/j.placenta.2017.01.116. Epub 2017.
  • Lees H, Walters H, Cox LS. (2016) Animal and human models to understand ageing. Maturitas. 2016 Nov;93:18-27. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2016.06.008.
  • Alimbetov D, Davis T, Brook AJ, Cox LS, Faragher RG, Nurgozhin T, Zhumadilov Z, Kipling D. (2016) Suppression of the senescence-associated secret ory phenotype (SASP) in human fibroblasts using small molecule inhibitors of p38 MAP kinase and MK2. Biogerontology. 2016 Apr;17(2):305-15. doi: 10.1007/s10522-015-9610-z.
  • Walters HE, Deneka-Hannemann S, Cox LS. (2016) Reversal of phenotypes of cellular senescence by pan-mTOR inhibition. Aging (Albany NY). 2016 Feb;8(2):231-44.
  • Cox, LS, Harris, DA, Pears, CJ. (2012) Thrive in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. OUP (Oxford). ISBN: 978-0-19-964548-0 (undergraduate teaching/revision text)
  • Cox, LS. (Ed) (2009) Molecular Themes in DNA Replication. Royal Society of Chemistry (Cambridge) ISBN 978-0-85404-164-0 (research text)