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Developmental biology and reproduction

How are different cells made, organised into tissues, arranged in the correct places and coordinated to form an animal? These are the fundamental questions of developmental biology. At PDN we are investigating many aspects of development, including how cells talk to one another, how they move to new locations, how they assemble and rearrange to make tissues and how their functions change with age. We use a wide range of approaches to study the development of a variety of animal models and humans.

Developmental biology research in PDN is particularly active in several key areas:

  • the process of turning genes on and off as cells become more specialized, which is fundamental to understanding a key mystery of development: how a single cell, the fertilized egg, gives rise to all the different kinds of cells in our body.

  • stem cells and the first decisions specifying cell types in the embryo, which will improve the efficacy of in vitro fertilization and advance the new field of regenerative medicine.

  • the mechanics of cell movement and behavior, which is key to understand how cells coordinate to build the body, fight off infections, and aberrantly move to new locations during cancer metastasis.

  • development of the nervous system, including how the myriad of different neuron types are programmed and how the neurons make the right connections to provide circuits in the brain.

  • how the environment of the uterus impacts on foetal development and adult life, which helps us understand pregnancy complications and discover how diseases that occur in adults can be caused by the environment during pregnancy.


Labs

adams

Visualising morphogenetic mechanisms

Laboratory for primate embryogenesis

baker

Neurogenic placodes and the neural crest: development of the vertebrate peripheral sensory nervous system

brand

Brand lab

Stem cells to synapses: regulation of self-renewal and differentiation in the nervous system

bray

 

Neural and epidermal development in Drosophila: from signalling to morphogenesis

Brown lab

Molecular analysis of morphogenesis

burton

Human placental development and the involvement of the placenta in complications of pregnancy

colledge

Colledge lab

Transgenic mouse models of human disease: reproductive physiology, cystic fibrosis, and cardiac physiology

forhead

Forhead lab

Mammalian endocrinology and the hormonal regulation of fetal physiology and development

fowden

Fowden lab

Comparative developmental physiology, mechanisms controlling intrauterine development

Franze lab

Mechanics in nervous system development and pathology

giussani

Giussani lab

How adverse conditions during pregnancy can programme heart disease in the adult offspring

holt

Holt lab

Axon guidance in the developing brain

Huch lab

Stem cells and tissue regeneration in liver and pancreas

keynes

Keynes lab

Development and repair of the nervous system, and vertebral segmental patterning

Kolahgar lab

Extrinsic regulation of intestinal proliferation and gut maintenance in Drosophila

Lee lab

Stem-stromal cell interactions and regulatory networks that allow proper lineage specification and tissue regeneration

nichols

Nichols lab

How the embryo accommodates fluctuations in environment, signals and cell number to produce a foetus

sanson

Sanson lab

Morphogenesis of the epithelium in Drosophila embryos

Sarris lab

How immune cells search tissues and find sites of infection or tissue damage

schofield

Schofield lab

Experimental and informatic approaches to understanding human disease

sferruzzi perri

Sferruzzi-Perri lab

Etiology of pregnancy complications and the regulation of developmental processes

surani

Surani lab

Mammalian germ cells, pluripotency and epigenesis

watson

Watson lab

The epigenetic role of folate during development

white

White lab

Genomic approaches to transcriptional regulation and chromosome organisation in Drosophila

zernicka goetz

Zernicka-Goetz lab

Cell fate, plasticity and pluripotency in the development of the early mouse embryo

Other Academics specializing in this area

David Bainbridge

University Clinical Veterinary Anatomist

Martin Johnson

Retired                                     

Peter Wooding

Retired