Jason Northey

Image of Dr. Jason Northey

Assistant Professor

Ph.D, McGill University
Postdoctoral Fellowship, UCSF




The Northey group is currently recruiting.
Those interested in Undergraduate, Graduate or Postdoctoral research opportunities, please send a CV and transcript to: jnorthey@ualberta.ca


Biomechanical and biochemical cues collaborate across length scales to direct cell fate during development and are critical for the maintenance of tissue homeostasis. Chronic corruption of tensional homeostasis, such as that induced by elevated ECM stiffness and Integrin mechano-signaling, can foster the development of treatment resistant and metastatic breast cancer. Our research uses genetically engineered mouse models, organoid cultures, and hydrogel systems with tunable mechanical properties to investigate how biomechanical forces alter cell behavior during mammary gland development and breast cancer initiation and progression with a particular focus on steroid hormone responses and epigenetic regulation of chromatin organization. A better understanding of the spatiotemporal force-generated pattern of cell phenotypes and their relationships in the tumor microenvironment will inspire new strategies to target and prevent breast cancer.


Selected Publications:

Mechanosensitive hormone signaling promotes mammary progenitor expansion and breast cancer risk.
Northey JJ,
Hayward MK, Yui Y, Stashko C, Kai F, Mouw JK, Thakar D, Lakins JN, Ironside AJ, Samson S, Mukhtar RA, Hwang ES, Weaver VM.
Cell Stem Cell. (2024) Jan 4;31(1):106-126.e13.

A convolutional neural network STIFMap reveals associations between stromal stiffness and EMT in breast cancer.
Stashko C, Hayward MK*, Northey JJ*, Pearson N, Ironside AJ, Lakins JN, Oria R, Goyette MA, Mayo L, Russnes HG, Hwang ES, Kutys ML, Polyak K, Weaver VM.
Nat Commun. (2023) Jun 15;14(1):3561. *Co-Second authorship

Extracellular Matrix Glycation and Crosslinking in Mammary Tumor Progression.
Northey JJ
, Weaver VM.
Methods Mol Biol. (2023) 2614:247-260.

Mechanosensitive Steroid Hormone Signaling and Cell Fate. 
Northey JJ,
Weaver VM.
Endocrinology. (2022) Aug 1;163(8):bqac085.

Matrix compliance permits NF-κB activation to drive therapy resistance in breast cancer.
Drain AP, Zahir N, Northey JJ, Zhang H, Huang PJ, Maller O, Lakins JN, Yu X, Leight JL, Alston-Mills BP, Hwang ES, Chen YY, Park CC, Weaver VM.
J Exp Med. (2021) May 3;218(5):e20191360.

Stiff stroma increases breast cancer risk by inducing the oncogene ZNF217.
Northey JJ, Barrett AS, Acerbi I, Hayward MK, Talamantes S, Dean IS, Mouw JK, Ponik SM, Lakins JN, Huang PJ, Wu J, Shi Q, Samson S, Keely PJ, Mukhtar RA, Liphardt JT, Shepherd JA, Hwang ES, Chen YY, Hansen KC, Littlepage LE, Weaver VM.
J Clin Invest. (2020) Nov 2;130(11):5721-5737

Tissue Force Programs Cell Fate and Tumor Aggression. 
Northey JJ, Przybyla L, Weaver VM.
Cancer Discov. (2017) Nov;7(11):1224-1237.



Selected Publications