...

Developing a framework of support

One of the research areas of the Martinez-Arias lab in the Department of Genetics at the University of Cambridge, UK, is the development of gastruloids – small, self-organising aggregates of mouse embryonic stem cells. PhD student Peter Baillie-Johnson was working on the generation of elongating gastruloids to mimic the first stages of axial elongation in the mouse embryo, but was limited by aggregates adhering to the surface of culture plates.

Diving right into research

Combining biology and mathematics, Julia Samson, a PhD student at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, focuses her research on the pulsing behaviour of soft corals (Xenia and Heteroxenia) and how this behaviour affects and is affected by local water flows. Her project includes computational fluid dynamics simulations and flow visualisation experiments in the lab, with field data essential to test and validate these fluid–structure interaction models.

Developing skills in invertebrate embryology

In June 2016, students and post-docs from China, Colombia, Mexico, Germany, USA, India and Russia attended the Second International Summer Course on the embryology of marine invertebrates at the White Sea Biological Station attached to Moscow State University (WSBS MSU).

Tracking neural crest development

The neural crest is a vertebrate-specific embryonic cell population that originates near the developing neural tube and migrates to form critical adult structures, including the skull and peripheral nervous system. To shed light on the molecular mechanisms of vertebrate evolution, Dorit Hockman from the Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine at the University of Oxford studies the development and evolution of the neural crest by investigating its development in the most basal vertebrate model organism, the lamprey.

Coming in from the cold

In February 2016, multidisciplinary postdoc Blanca Figuerola was part of a research campaign in Antarctica, on board the oceanographic vessel BIO Hespérides. The objectives of the campaign were to identify natural products (secondary metabolites) involved in ecological relationships and to assess potential pharmacological effects. Blanca’s field of interest is the chemical ecology of Antarctic bryozoans, which use repellent compounds to defend against predators. 

Visualising the bacterial cytoskeleton

The bacterial cytoskeleton controls many important cellular processes including bacterial cell morphogenesis, division and motility. Elements of the bacterial cytoskeleton mirror the major components of the cytoskeleton in eukaryotic cells; for example, the actin homologue MreB, the tubulin homologue FtsZ and the intermediate filament homologue CreS.

Extending the reach of zebrafish models

The 9th Zebrafish Disease Models Meeting in Singapore was held with the aims of promoting zebrafish as a model system for the analysis of human disease mechanisms amongst the scientific community in Asia, bringing together those already engaged in zebrafish research, and exchanging ideas, methodologies and new findings.

Experimental neuroscience takes to the hills

The Transylvanian Experimental Neuroscience Summer School (TENSS) grew from an idea shared between Florin Albeanu and Raul Mureşan during a conference in Romania in 2010. Two years later, the first TENSS took place on the shores of Pike Lake in the picturesque province of Transylvania, Romania.

Making the connection

To investigate a potential relationship between herpes simplex virus infection and Alzheimer’s disease-related neuropathology, Eloise Mikkonen from the University of Tampere, Finland, was part of a collaborative project with researchers from Umeå University, Sweden.

Studying the stars

Claudia Cuomo from the Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn in Naples, Italy used a Travelling Fellowship from Development to visit Dr Veronica Hinman’s lab at the Carnegie Mellon University of Pittsburgh to learn about the breeding, handling and manipulation of the sea star Patiria miniata at an artificial sea water facility close to the lab. Ensuring she is able to regularly harvest fresh, good quality gametes is crucial to Claudia’s research into the homeodomain transcription factor protein, Xlox, in echinoderms.

Latest Company News


Visit our journal websites

Development Journal of Cell Science The Journal of Experimental Biology Disease Models & Mechanisms Biology Open

© 2017 The Company of Biologists Ltd | Registered Charity 277992
Registered in England and Wales | Company Limited by Guarantee No 514735
Registered office: Bidder Building, Station Road, Histon, Cambridge CB24 9LF, UK