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Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience


The new logo was chosen as the winner of an internal competition among its staff

Recently the Communications Committee ran an internal competition to design a logo for the Department of Physiology, Development & Neuroscience that captures our broad research and teaching activities. We received more than 20 entries, with excellent creative ideas and designs. One logo, designed by PhD student Erin Slatery, member of the Boroviak lab, stood out for its all-encompassing but simple design, and for its great flexibility.

After some feedback from departmental committees and a lot of further design work by Erin, two variations were put to the Department for a vote. Today we are launching the new PDN logo, you can download it here and we encourage you to use in your talks, slides and posters.

We asked Erin to tell us a little bit about herself and her winning logo design.

How did you come up with the logo design?

I was inspired by the Centenary plaques outside the Physiology building, in particularly by the symbol of the action potential, and I wanted to incorporate that into the logo. I then chose to add the blastocyst, a stage of mammalian development that I often draw as a member of the CTR. Finally, a human heart: when I think physiology, I think heart. Plus, it's very representative of the beauty and complexity of anatomy.

Why did you pick those colours?

I tend to use red, yellow and blue in the heat maps I make in my research. Also, red and yellow are already present in the main University logo, and the third colour is an homage to the famous "Cambridge blue".

Have you designed something like this before?

I never designed logos before! I started using illustrator software while studying for my PhD with Thorsten Bovoriak in the last lab two-three years. I use it mainly to produce reports and conference posters about my work, which is about gene expression networks in marmoset embryonic stem cells. As I started to get familiar with the illustration software, I was able to make a logo from scratch!

So you did not have any previous experience in graphic design before doing this?

Not at all! I did not do this as a hobby outside work either- but now that I've won the competition, perhaps I'll start!