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Off and On: it’s more complicated than we thought.

Posted by on January 23rd, 2020

We learn fairly early on when becoming biologists that both development and an organism’s response to environmental stressors require turning the right set of genes on in the right cells, at the right time. Clearly, for “on” to be meaningful, other genes have to be “off,” and many disordered conditions are associated with misexpression of[…]

CENTURI recruits group leaders

Posted by on January 14th, 2020

  CENTURI seeks to attract outstanding computer scientists, physicists, or mathematicians with a theoretical and/or computational biology project. The selected candidates, who are expected to bridge biology and other disciplines will be affiliated to two institutes and will be offered competitive funding.   The questions that are being addressed by this interdisciplinary research initiative include:[…]

What might evolutionary muscle loss and pathological atrophies have in common?

Posted by on January 8th, 2020

By Mai P. Tran and Kimberly L. Cooper “It’s the cutest rodent I have ever seen, even cuter than a cuddly hamster, and it would be fun doing a rotation for the opportunity to work with this animal.” That was my thought, as a first-year graduate student, when I first heard Kim present her research on[…]

Postdoctoral Fellowship: Studies of how niche-rearrangements control organ progenitor fate

Posted by on December 11th, 2019

OPEN POSTDOCTORAL POSITION  The Semb group is looking for a postdoctoral candidate with a strong developmental biology/cellular mechanobiology and/or a biological image processing background to identify and study novel cell and molecular mechanisms predicting the differentiation of bi-potent progenitors in the developing pancreas. During organogenesis fate-determining cues are generated by dynamic interactions between stem cells/progenitors, their[…]

A domino effect on brain developmental evolution

Posted by on December 6th, 2019

The discipline “Evo-devo” studies the developmental basis of morphological evolution. In the field, some original animal models are emerging as interesting model organisms, enriching the knowledge in the field more and more. In the DECA team (Développement et évolution du cerveau antérieur, in French) we use an Evo-devo approach to study the developmental mechanisms responsible[…]

Suzanne Eaton (1959-2019)

Posted by on December 6th, 2019

This obituary by Frank Jülicher was recently published in Development Suzanne Eaton, Professor at the Technical University Dresden and Group Leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, tragically died on 2 July 2019. Suzanne was a remarkable person, both as a scientist and as a human being. Having worked[…]

How do new cell types evolve? Sea urchins show the way….

Posted by on November 21st, 2019

We know surprisingly little about how evolution has created new cell types. One of the best examples of a recently evolved cell type comes from early sea urchin development. Most sea urchins produce a group of early embryonic cells known as micromeres- four small blastomeres that form by unequal cell division at the vegetal pole[…]

A biology-modeling crosstalk to uncover feather pattern evolution

Posted by on November 20th, 2019

Richard Bailleul, Jonathan Touboul and Marie Manceau   Patterning in question: 60 years of mathematical and biological studies The coat of Vertebrates displays a stunning diversity of motifs created by the spatial arrangement of appendages and pigments across the skin surface. Strikingly, many have similar periodicity (i.e., number of repetitions within a period of space[…]

How do cells know their future and forget their past

Posted by on November 7th, 2019

All cells in the body contain the same genetic material. The difference between cells therefore depends solely on which genes are expressed or ‘turned on’. Now, researchers from the University of Copenhagen have gained new insights into how genes are turned on and off and how the cells “forget their past” while developing into a[…]

Secret talk between epithelium and endothelium determines hair follicle stem cell fate

Posted by on November 6th, 2019

By Kefei Nina Li and Prachi Jain   Stem cells are typically defined by their ability to self-renew and differentiate. These activities are tightly controlled by both intrinsic cues and extrinsic cues from the microenvironment, known as the SC niche. This niche consists of multiple components, among which blood vessels (BVs) are critical as they[…]