the community site for and by developmental biologists

The serpent’s maw: mouth function and the dynamics of Hydra regeneration

Posted by on September 30th, 2019

One of the biggest open questions in biology is how organisms can form complex patterns (limbs, organs, entire body plans) from initially disordered or very simple states. Every animal does this at the beginning of its life, forming its full complexity from a single cell. Some are capable of similar feats even after their bodies[…]

Genetics Unzipped – Mergers and Acquisitions

Posted by on September 26th, 2019

We find out what happens when two cells move in together, unpack the history of genetic engineering and bleat on about Dolly the Sheep.

Using hemimetabolous insects to investigate the origin of the tra-dsx axis

Posted by on September 24th, 2019

The story behind our recent paper in eLife.   Rapid turn over of sex determination mechanisms provides biologists with an elegant study system connecting sexual selection to molecular evolution. Striking examples of this turnover are found in African cichlids, where multiple sex determination signals exist not only within the same genera, but sometimes within the[…]

Moving in concert: How lateral line primordium cells coordinate to migrate

Posted by on September 21st, 2019

Written by Tugba Colak-Champollion Story behind our recent paper in Current Biology “Cadherin-Mediated Cell Coupling Coordinates Chemokine Sensing across Collectively Migrating Cells” (Tugba Colak-Champollion, Ling Lan, Alisha R. Jadhav, Naoya Yamaguchi, Gayatri Venkiteswaran, Heta Patel, Michael Cammer, Martin Meier-Schellersheim, Holger Knaut)   Guided cell migration is a crucial event in many biological and mechanical processes.[…]

Inflate your embryo

Posted by on September 17th, 2019

How would you create a hole between two sticky surfaces? Simply crack it! At a first glance, trying to pull apart the two surfaces seems to be a good idea, but in practice, you might need a lot of energy. However, it seems that the mouse embryo has found a smart and efficient way to do[…]

Workshop commentary: past, present and future of choroid plexus and cerebrospinal fluid biology

Posted by on September 16th, 2019

Written by: Aida Rodrigo Albors, Laura Pellegrini and Neil Dani. This July, The Company of Biologists Workshops together with Maria K. Lehtinen and Fiona Doetsch organized a meeting titled “New Frontiers in the Brain: Unexpected Roles of the Choroid Plexus-Cerebrospinal Fluid System in Health and Disease”. Set in the gorgeous countryside of Steyning in the United[…]

Stowers Research Conferences: Developmental Cell Biology

Posted by on September 12th, 2019

Stowers Research Conferences are biennial meetings that bring together researchers, faculty, and graduate students to inspire creative thought and collaboration in the basic sciences. The Developmental Cell Biology meeting will include 11 speakers with 13 talks chosen from abstracts, 2 poster sessions and a conference party to close the meeting. April 22-24, 2020 Abstract Deadline: January[…]

The people behind the papers – Maurício Rocha-Martins and Mariana Silveira

Posted by on September 12th, 2019

This interview, the 68th in our series, was recently published in Development. See also the Press Release associated with the paper and also Brazilian newspaper Folha’s piece on the work  Retinal ganglion cells connect the retina to the brain, and their degeneration underlies glaucoma, which is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in humans and currently untreatable.[…]

Genetics Unzipped podcast: Big Questions about the Big C

Posted by on September 12th, 2019

We’re digging into some of the mysteries around what’s often seen as the ultimate genetic disease: cancer.

Heinrich Reichert (1949-2019)

Posted by on September 10th, 2019

This obituary by Sonia Sen and K. VijayRaghavan was recently published in Development Heinrich Reichert, Professor Emeritus at the University of Basel, Switzerland, passed away on the 13th of June 2019 after a prolonged illness. Heinrich described himself as ‘a hedonist when it came to science’ because he said it gave him great pleasure. It was[…]