Member Spotlight

Cynthia Andoniadou, PhD

December 09, 2021

Cynthia Andoniadou is a Reader in Stem Cell Biology at the Centre for Craniofacial & Regenerative Biology at King's College London. She was born in Greece and carried out her studies in London at Queen Mary, University of London and the MRC National Institute for Medical Research, and her postdoctoral research at the UCL Institute for Child Health. Cynthia's lab focuses on the regulation of stem cells in the pituitary and adrenal glands and how stem cells interact with their environment, influencing the function of endocrine cells. The team study these interactions both during normal homeostasis as well as in situations of physiological challenge and disease. Their work has established several mouse models of pituitary pathologies. 

What is your favorite Endocrine Society memory? 

 The first time I sat through a 'final grid' session in an Annual Meeting Steering Committee planning meeting. After spending endless hours (days) planning sessions for ENDO non-stop, it all magically came together as a programme in one giant grid which was projected on a giant wall. Everyone was rallying around to smoothen out any clashes and make the programme beautiful and exciting. It bonded us as a group and we were all very proud of what we had achieved.

What advice would you give for someone looking to become more involved in the Endocrine Society?

The Society is extremely welcoming and supportive, both the staff and volunteers on all committees, so please don't hesitate to approach them and let them know that you are interested. There is always a lot of work to be done and we need a constant influx of enthusiastic people. I made many 'friends for life' through Endocrine Society involvement and I am very grateful for all interactions.

How has the Endocrine Society supported your professional development/career journey?

I was fortunate enough to receive a Mara E. Lieberman Memorial Travel Grant to present my research at my first ENDO (2013, San Francisco). It took place a few months before I was due to start my own lab and the exposure I received was a big boost. I met many of my endocrine heroes and established several collaborations through that meeting, all of which were crucial during the subsequent early years of my career and still today. As a basic scientist, I came into endocrinology from a different field (development of the forebrain) and I knew I was making the right move when I realised how welcoming and engaging both the basic and clinical participants were at the meetings.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Clay target shooting, a lot of baking, crafts, watching horror & suspense movies with my eyes covered and spoiling my two cats. Reading it back I seem to have a great work-life balance!!

If you were in a room with all other members of the Endocrine Society, what is the one question you would want to ask the other members and get their feedback on?

I'd ask clinical members what they would consider the most important areas that need improvement through further research, that they have identified in their clinical practice. What is currently substandard that you would like to change? As a basic scientist, I sometimes find that curiosity about scientific conundrums and findings can lead us down very exciting path but staying focused on the direct or indirect impact of our research to patients can help shape our overall direction. It doesn't apply to all basic researchers, but for me, the clinical interactions are important.

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