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Feed me!

Posted by on December 16th, 2010

With people in many countries preparing to take a few days off at the end of this month, and other countries starting their summer break, I’m sure many of you have had to deal with the stress of handling your experiments over the holidays. How do you explain to a tank of zebrafish or a[…]

Nothing beats a movie for developmental biologists

Posted by on December 16th, 2010

Webcasting is a new art that is still being perfected, but which holds great promise for scientific collaboration at both small and large scales.

Ernst Haeckel and the recapitulation of an “early” biological debate

Posted by on December 8th, 2010

Scientists don’t spend free time to think about the changes that made possible the birth of a new way to make research. For example, how we moved from a world driven by religious and philosophical beliefs to a world demanding explanations and mechanisms? Ernst Haeckel was one of the scientists who made that change possible[…]

Making life out of noise: “Stochasticity in cell and developmental processes”. Cumberland Lodge, Windsor, UK, 17-20 October, 2010. Organized by The Company of Biologists.

Posted by on October 28th, 2010

I always travel with my suitcase packed with genes. Airports, planes and trains offer me the only instances where I find two hours solid of work, and they (genes) are then my best companions. However, in my discipline – developmental biology – it seems lately that, by simply analysing more genes, we are not getting[…]

Who will regulate UK embryo research?

Posted by on October 1st, 2010

In an attempt to tighten the country’s budget, the UK government wants to cut a large number of arms-length non-governmental organisations. These “quangos” (quasi-autonomous non-governmental organizations) include regulatory bodies, advisory organs, and other committees. Until last week, there were only vague speculations as to which funds would be cut, but the news has become more[…]

Nobel Predictions

Posted by on September 23rd, 2010

Thomson Reuters has predicted who they think will walk away with the Nobel Prizes in medicine, chemistry, physics, and economics. Their predictions for the prize for Physiology or Medicine include six names in four areas: – Douglas Coleman and Jeffrey Friedman, for the discovery of leptin – Ernest McCulloch and James Till, for the discovery[…]

Supplementary?

Posted by on August 19th, 2010

It seems that following on the tracks of Cell Press, which is reducing the maximum number of supplemental figures to one per manuscript figure, now J. Neuroscience is doing away with it altogether. Hooray? I agree that it is not a very good thing at times that the amount of Suppl Figs has risen (or[…]

Changes in Canadian postdoc funding

Posted by on August 17th, 2010

Some Canadian postdocs are awaiting the next academic year with bated breath: will they earn less than they did during their PhD, or twice as much as their colleagues? Canada’s 2010 research budget, announced this past spring, was full of surprises for the thousands of postdoctoral researchers in the country. To promote top-level talent, the[…]

Too many postdocs and PhD students?

Posted by on July 23rd, 2010

There was a nice piece on the Naturejobs site this week, written by postdoc Katherine Sixt. She describes how she started to realize that not every postdoc will eventually become a professor. There simply aren’t enough positions available, so postdocs should look at other careers. But as a postdoc, and even as a PhD student,[…]

Stem cells and developmental biology: old friends meet again…or did they ever part ways?

Posted by on June 30th, 2010

Ahhh the Node, my favourite part of the embryo: nice cup shape you can lie back in and get a whirly cilia massage…. OK, on with the post. So it seems that everyone is working on stem cells now. They’re all the rage. Students come through for a rotation and ask “do you work on[…]