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Dr Natalia V Botchkareva

PositionReader in Cutaneous Biology
LocationH36b, Richmond building
DepartmentSchool of Chemistry and Bioscience
RKT CentreCentre for Skin Sciences
Telephone(01274) 233795

Research Interests (key words only)

Skin and Hair Biology : miRNA : BMPs : Wound repair; Light

PhD Supervision

Dr Botchkareva is responsible for supervision of the following PhD students:

  • David Broadley (80%) “Role of microRNAs in apolecia areata” impact of chronological ageing on chromatin remodelling in hair regeneration"
  • Carl Kellett (30%) "Exploration of chromatin remodelling processes in human hair growth cycle and impact of chronological ageing on chromatin remodelling in hair regeneration"
  • Serena Buscone (80%) and Charles Mignon (20%) Early Stage Researchers: the joint European Framework 7 Industrial Training Network Marie Curie proposal “Impact of biophysical stimuli on the behavior and activity of cells that reside in the major stem cell compartments in the skin” in collaboration with Philips, Netherlands.
  • Inemo Asamaowei (25%) "Epigenetic control of skin regeneration"

Graduated PhD Students

2014    Majid Alam (90%) "MicroRNAs (miRNA) in the control of important processes of homeostatic and reactive processes in skin"                  

2013    Chris Lewis (50%) "Role of Bone morphogenetic protein signalling in the control of skin wound healing" 

2011    Michal Gdula (10%)  “Establishing three dimensional chromatin organizations during skin development                   

2010    Mohammed Ikram Ahmed (90%) "MicroRNAs (miRNA) in hair-cycle-dependent gene regulation, hair growth control, and associated tissue remodelling"                       

2009    Andrei Mardaryev (10%) “Role of BMP signaling in skin tumorigenesis”     

Teaching and Supervisory Responsibilities

Module Leader in Research and Analytical Methods (MSc Biomedical Sciences)


Administrative Responsibilities



Study History


PhD in Cytology, Morphology and Embryology, Humboldt University Berlin, Germany and People’s Friendship University Moscow, Russia     

1985 -1990           

DMD, Chuvash State University School of Medicine, Cheboksary, Russia

Professional Activities

Editorial Board Member:

Scientific Reports


Reviewer for leading life science journals:

  • Nature
  • Nature Communication
  • PLOS Genetics
  • EMBO Journal
  • Journal of Cell Sciences
  • Journal of Investigative Dermatology
  • Development
  • Experimental Dermatology
  • British Journal of Dermatology
  • Clinical and Experimental Dermatology
  • Neuroscience Letters
  • RNA journal
  • Gene
  • Cell and Tissue
  • Open Biology (Royal Society)
  • Cell and Tissue Research

Reviewers for Research grant agencies:

MRC, UK; BBSRC, UK; British Skin Foundation, Swiss National Science Foundation; Austrian Science Fund (FWF); Israel Science Foundation


Workshops and Meeting Organizer:

2016 2nd International Symposium “Epigenetic Control of Skin Development and Regeneration” (Bradford, UK); Member of organizing committee

2013 7th World Congress of Hair Research (Edinburgh, Scotland), Member of organizing committee and International Science Committee

2012 International Symposium “Epigenetic Control of Skin Development and Regeneration” (Bradford, UK); Member of organizing committee

2010 Workshop “Modern Approaches in Biomedical Research", University of Bradford (external speakers from Industry and Academia)



European Society for Dermatological Research (ESDR), European Hair Research Society (EHRS)

Research Areas

Biology of the hair follicle:-

  • molecular mechanisms controlling hair growth and their alterations in different hair loss conditions
  • biological responses of the skin and hair follicle to environmental and other stressors
  • mechanisms of skin and hair follicle aging
  • molecular mechanisms controlling cutaneous wound repair

Dr Natalia V. Botchkareva’s research interest is the molecular regulation of hair growth and its alterations in different forms of hair loss, analysis of biological responses of the skin and hair follicle to environmental and other stressors, as well as delineating mechanisms underlying skin and hair follicle aging. During my postgrad studies I explored the role of neurotrophic factors in the control of hair follicle morphogenesis and cycling. When I was working as a Research Associate Scientist in the Department of Dermatology at Boston University School of Medicine (1999-2000) we, for the first time, charcterised mechanisms controlling cyclic regeneration of the hair follicle pigmentary unit and identified distinct melanocyte populations showing differential dependence on SCF/c-kit signaling (Botchkareva et al., FASEB J, 2001). In 2001-2007, I worked as a Senior Scientist at the Gillette Advanced Technology Centre (Needham, MA, USA). The projects involved exploration of the roles of new signalingmolecules applicable for the development of novel products for correction of skin/hair growth abnormalities.

Current research in Dr Botchkareva’s laboratory focuses on delineating the roles for microRNAs and distinct epigenetics regulators in controlling gene expression programs in the skin during development, hair cycle-associated tissue remodelling and postnatal skin repair. My laboratory characterized several miRNAs important for skin and hair follicle homeostasis. This work was published in 3 original articles (FASEB J, 2010; J Cell Sci, 2011, and J Cell Biology, 2014) and summarised in the review articles (Cell Cycle, 2012; Experimental Dermatology, 2015, J Invest Dermatol (2016 in press). This work was supported in part by a Royal Society Grant for New Investigators, by the Wellcome Trust via a Summer Studentship, and by the Medical Research Council, UK.


Current Projects

  • MicroRNA/mRNA regulatory networks in controlling gene expression during hair cycle-associated tissue re-modelling and regeneration
  • Molecular mechanisms contributing to skin and hair follicle aging progression
  • The role of microRNAs in alopecia areata
  • The role of microRNAs in skin wound healing
  • Light-mediated hair growth modulation



Recent Publications:-


Buscone S, Mardaryev AN, Raafs B, Bikker JW, Sticht C, Gretz N, Farjo N, Uzunbajakava NE, Botchkareva NV. A new path in defining light parameters for hair growth: Discovery and modulation of photoreceptors in human hair follicle. Lasers Surg Med. 2017 Sep;49(7):705-718. doi: 10.1002/lsm.22673. Epub 2017 Apr 18. PubMed PMID: 28418107.

Messenger AG, Botchkareva NV. Unraveling the secret life of the hair follicle: from fungi to innovative hair loss therapies. Exp Dermatol. 2017 Jun;26(6):471. doi: 10.1111/exd.13384. PubMed PMID: 28608517.

Botchkareva NV. The Molecular Revolution in Cutaneous Biology: Noncoding RNAs: New Molecular Players in Dermatology and Cutaneous Biology. J Invest Dermatol. 2017 May;137(5):e105-e111. doi: 10.1016/j.jid.2017.02.001. Review. PubMed PMID:28411840.

Mignon C, Uzunbajakava NE, Raafs B, Botchkareva NV, Tobin DJ. Photobiomodulation of human dermal fibroblasts in vitro: decisive role of cell culture conditions and treatment protocols on experimental outcome. Sci Rep. 2017 Jun 5;7(1):2797. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-02802-0. PubMed PMID: 28584230; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5459822.

Aunin E, Broadley D, Ahmed MI, Mardaryev AN, Botchkareva NV. Exploring a Role for Regulatory miRNAs In Wound Healing during Ageing:Involvement of miR-200c in wound repair. Sci Rep. 2017 Jun 12;7(1):3257. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-03331-6. PubMed PMID: 28607463; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5468284.


Mignon C, Botchkareva NV, Uzunbajakava NE, Tobin DJ. Photobiomodulation for hair regrowth and wound healing: a therapy full of promise but a literature full of confusion.  Dermatol. 2016 Apr 20. doi: 10.1111/exd.13035. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 27095546.

Andl T, Botchkareva NV MicroRNAsmiRNAs) in the control of HF development and cycling: the next frontiers in hair research. .  Exp Dermatol. 2015 Nov;24(11):821-6. doi: 10.1111/exd.12785. Epub 2015 Aug 25. Review. PubMed PMID: 26121602.

MicroRNA-214 controls skin and hair follicle development by modulating the activity of the Wnt pathway. Ahmed MI, Alam M, Emelianov VU, Poterlowicz K, Patel A, Sharov AA, Mardaryev AN, Botchkareva NV. J Cell Biol. 2014 Nov 24;207(4):549-67. doi: 10.1083/jcb.201404001.

Sharova TY, Poterlowicz K, Botchkareva NV, Kondratiev NA, Aziz A, Spiegel JH, Botchkarev VA, Sharov AA. Complex Changes in the Apoptotic and Cell Differentiation Programs during Initiation of the Hair Follicle Response to Chemotherapy. J Invest Dermatol. 2014 Dec;134(12):2873-82. doi: 10.1038/jid.2014.267.

Lewis CJ, Mardaryev AN, Poterlowicz K, Sharova TY, Aziz A, Sharpe DT, Botchkareva NV, Sharov AA.  morphogenetic protein signaling suppresses wound-induced skin repair by inhibiting keratinocyte proliferation and migration. J Invest Dermatol. 2014 Mar;134(3):827-37. doi: 10.1038/jid.2013.419.

First International Symposium "Epigenetic Control of Skin Development and Regeneration": how chromatin regulators orchestrate skin functions. Botchkarev VA, Fessing MY, Botchkareva NV, Westgate G, Tobin DJ.  J Invest Dermatol. 2013 Aug;133(8):1918-21. doi: 10.1038/jid.2013.126

Botchkareva NV. MicroRNA/mRNA regulatory networks in the control of skin development and regeneration. (review) Cell Cycle. 2012;11(3):468-74.

Ahmed MI, Mardaryev AN, Lewis CJ, Sharov AA, Botchkareva NV. MicroRNA-21 is an important downstream component of BMP signalling in epidermal keratinocytes. J Cell Sci. 2011;124 (Pt 20):3399-404 (featured article) 

Mardaryev AN, Ahmed MI, Vlahov NV, Fessing MY, Gill JH, Sharov AA, Botchkareva NV. MicroRNA-31 controls hair cycle-associated changes in gene expression programs of the skin and hair follicle. FASEB Journal, 2010; 24:3869-81. 


Atoyan R, Shander D, Botchkareva NV. Non-Neuronal expression of transient receptor potential type A1 (TRPA1) in human skin.J Invest Dermatol.2009;129:2312-5. (featured article) 
Botchkareva NV, Kahn M, Ahluwalia G, Shander D. Survivin in the human hair follicle.   J Invest Dermatol. 2007; 127:479-82. 

Botchkareva NV, Ahluwalia G., Shander D. Apoptosis in the hair follicle [review article]. J Invest Dermatol.2006; 126, 258-64. (invited review article)


 i) Faculty of 1000 – rated 6: Nilius B: F1000 Recommendation of [Atoyan R et al., J Invest Dermatol 2009, 129(9):2312-5]. Faculty of 1000, 13 Oct 2009; DOI: 10.3410/ f.1165242.628185.

ii) Bíró T, Kovács L. An "ice-cold" TR(i)P to skin biology: the role of TRPA1 in human epidermal keratinocytes. J Invest Dermatol. 2009;129(9):2096-9


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