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YEN 2016 review

Posted by on June 26th, 2016

My informal review of YEN this year is by necessity a bit rushed but, for what it is, here it is. Most reviews are very short and pithy/jealous and only exist for some of the talks where, for a combination of good and bad reasons, I paid attention (I have tried to make this review[…]

Model Organism Database funding is in trouble: Let your voice be heard

Posted by on June 23rd, 2016

  Model Organisms such as yeast, worm, fly, fish, rat, and mouse are key drivers of biological research, providing manipulable and cost-effective experimental systems that continuously yield fundamental insights into human biology and health. These discoveries rely on the accumulated wealth of genetic, genomic and cellular knowledge for each organism, which is made accessible via[…]

Reproducibility: a pathological perspective

Posted by on June 20th, 2016

” the ability to reproduce experimental findings remains essential for the forward movement of science and the application of laboratory findings to the clinic”   This is an extract from a Special Article article that originally appeared in Disease Models and Mechanisms (available here Open Access) Paul Schofield, Jerrold Ward, John P. Sundberg   Reproducibility of data from[…]

Sweetening with a pinch of salt: maximized Cas9 efficiency in zebrafish

Posted by on June 14th, 2016

  Alexa Burger, Mosimann lab, Institute of Molecular Life Sciences, University of Zürich, Switzerland. When I first heard about the “new” genome editing method in early 2013 called CRISPR-Cas9, I thought: “Never ever again will I work with targeted nucleases!” Now it’s mid-2016, we published our approaches to maximize Cas9 effectiveness in zebrafish with Development[…]

Post-doc in Paris: Studying Stem Cell Genome Stability using Drosophila Intestinal Stem Cells (Biologists or Bioinformaticians)

Posted by on June 10th, 2016

Maintaining genome integrity of adult stem cells is important to prevent cancer initiation and stem cell functional decline during aging. Our recent work (Siudeja, Cell Stem Cell, 2015) has demonstrated that a surprising level of genome instability arises during aging in adult intestinal stem cells of Drosophila. Mechanistically, this is caused by frequent loss of[…]

3D mini-brain sheds light on Zika Virus in the brain

Posted by on June 10th, 2016

The Zika virus is making headlines as a major world health crisis linked to a host of neurological conditions. In the cases of microcephaly and Guillain-Barre, the evidence that Zika Virus is the root of the condition is strong enough to be considered causal. Babies born to infected mothers often have microcephaly, a condition that manifests[…]

Improving the design of animal experiments: Introducing the Experimental Design Assistant (EDA)

Posted by on June 7th, 2016

This post was originally published as a Newsletter article from ShARM (Shared Ageing Research Models) Scientists using animals in research have a responsibility to ensure that the studies are appropriately designed, conducted, analysed and reported so that they impartially and robustly answer the question they are intended to, and truly add to the knowledge base. Unfortunately there[…]

Cellular conversations

Posted by on June 7th, 2016

We know that cells are the building blocks of our bodies. But they are not like inert wooden blocks. They are complicated tiny machines that communicate with each other to make sure that the many simultaneously occurring processes in our bodies are in order. Stem cells participate in many of these cellular conversations, and a[…]

In Development this week (Vol. 143, Issue 11)

Posted by on May 31st, 2016

Here are the highlights from the current issue of Development:   A new paradigm for Wnt/β-catenin signalling The Wnt/β-catenin signalling pathway is a key pathway involved in a myriad of developmental processes, from body axis patterning to cell migration and fate specification. The role of the Wnt pathway is to regulate transcription of specific target[…]

Geometrical models of tissue as tools for uncovering rules underlying tissue organization

Posted by on May 27th, 2016

A major challenge in cell and developmental biology is to understand the mechanisms whereby cells interact with each other to form the variety of complex tissue forms present in organisms. This requires visualizing and analysing different cellular processes across multiple scale levels -from the subcellular to the tissue, i.e. generating cell and tissue models at[…]