Skip to main content


Photo of Dr Kirsty Wan

Dr Kirsty Wan

ERC Starting Grantee, Senior Lecturer


Telephone: 01392 727447

Extension: (Streatham) 7447

Visit personal website »

Office: T03.09, Living Systems Institute.

Twitter: @micromotility

Postdocs and PhD studentships are available in my group, informal enquiries welcome. 

I have a 4-year funded MRC DTP PhD available for entry in 2023 (Mapping pathogen transport and retention near ciliated surfaces). Apply here:

Overview: My main research interests concern microscale appendages called cilia, also known as eukaryotic flagella, which are evolutionarily ancient. We are pioneering novel biophysical approaches to understanding their form and function in diverse species. I was awarded an Academy of Medical Sciences Springboard Award in 2018 for a project on the biomechanics of motile cilia, and an ERC Starting Grant in 2019 to study how single-celled lifeforms control their movement. I am also a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute for Data Science and AI. 

See my personal webpage for more information and the latest preprints from my group. 

Biography: I obtained my BA, MMath, and PhD degrees from the University of Cambridge. From 2014 to 2017 I was a Thomas Nevile Junior Research Fellow at Magdalene College. In 2017 I joined the University of Exeter as research fellow and group leader at the Living Systems Institute, where I am currently senior research fellow and senior lecturer (proleptic) at the department of mathematics. 

Keywords: mathematical biology, dynamical systems, biological physics, quantitative biology, image processing, pattern recognition, cell biology, microscopy, phenomenological modelling, low Reynolds number fluid dynamics.

My Erdös number = 4. 
Wan (4) - Goldstein (3) - Moffat (2) - Lorentz (1) - Erdös (0)