December 18, 2014

3:21 PM | From naïve pluripotency to chimeras: a new ethical challenge?
This article by Insoo Hyun was first published in  Development. Also read the companion ethics article here.   In recent years, there has been much interest in the prospect of generating and using human stem cells that exhibit a state of naïve pluripotency. Such a pluripotent state might be functionally confirmed by assessing the chimeric contribution of these cells to non-human blastocysts. Furthermore, the […]
3:15 PM | Ethical considerations in chimera research
This article by Göran Hermerén was first published in  Development. Also read the companion ethics article  here.   The development of human pluripotent stem cells has opened up the possibility to analyse the function of human cells and tissues in animal hosts, thus generating chimeras. Although such lines of research have great potential for both basic and translational science, they […]

December 17, 2014

5:28 PM | Of mice and men: exploring Mouse ENCODE
The Mouse ENCODE Project released a slew of papers late last month reporting findings from a three-year effort to comprehensively map functional elements in the mouse genome. Their major findings are summarized in an integrative paper in Nature (Yue, F. et. al., 2014). Similar to the goals of the human ENCODE project (The ENCODE Project Consortium, […]
12:36 PM | (Developmental) Biology around the internet- December 2014
Here is December’s round-up of some of the interesting content that we spotted around the internet!   News & Research: - Masayo Takahashi was the winner of the 2014 Stem Cell Person of the Year award, while the STAP story was chosen as the Stem Cell Story of the Year, in an open vote in Paul Knoepfler’s blog. […]

December 16, 2014

5:34 PM | #EGU15 – Some Sessions of Interest (2) – Natural Hazards and Society
We’re expecting a strong GfGD presence again at the European Geosciences Union General Assembly in 2015 and look forward to meeting some of you there. Last week we noted some great sessions on natural hazards education, communications and geoethics (all with exemption from abstract processing charges). Here we note some sessions from the ‘Natural Hazards and Society’ session within the natural hazards division. Each of these may give people some novel ways […]
3:26 PM | Looking inwards: opening a window onto human development
This editorial was first published in Development. It was written by Olivier Pourquié, Benoit Bruneau, Gordon Keller and Austin Smith.   The past 30 years or so have witnessed tremendous advances in the field of developmental biology. This has resulted in a growing (although still incomplete) understanding of the molecular basis of embryonic development, including characterization of signals and genes involved […]
3:24 PM | In Development this week (Vol. 142, Issue 1)
Here are the highlights from the current issue of Development:   Planar cell polarity squeezes in on the action The planar cell polarity (PCP) pathway regulates the polarization of epithelial tissues in various contexts, but recent studies suggest that the PCP pathway also influences other aspects of morphogenesis. Here, Sergei Sokol and colleagues uncover a […]

December 15, 2014

3:02 PM | Why Not Publish Your Antibody Validation Data
Antibodies are frequently used in developmental biology labs, but their validation is crucial to provide the information needed in order to reliably interpret the results of experiments. Antibody validation is also important to help scientists chose antibodies that will be suitable for their experiments, yet the results of these validations rarely get published. To try […]
12:17 PM | Video: Basic brain mechanisms underlying autism
A few months ago I was able to participate on an Autism Think Tank taking place in Toronto, Canada. Summaries of the presentations can be found on a previous blog […]

December 12, 2014

2:06 PM | PhD position in developmental neurobiology- 2
How do carbohydrates instruct brain development? APPLICATION DEADLINE 16th January 2015 Project Code: 2015-EastBio-001 The emergence of a brain at the front-end of a growing embryo requires very precise orchestration to make sure that the right structures form in the right place at the right times. Central to this process is not only the giving […]
2:03 PM | PhD position in developmental neurobiology- 1
Functional importance of HS carbohydrates in brain development. APPLICATION DEADLINE 5th January 2015 Project Code: 2015-CIP-012 Understanding the developmental mechanisms which create the CNS of healthy individuals is important for understanding neurological and psychiatric disorders with neurodevelopmental components. Although great strides have been made in identifying key regulators of this process our understanding is still rudimentary. Improving our knowledge […]
9:00 AM | Images of Guatemala (8) – Volcanic Observatories
The volcanic observatories, run by the National Institute for Seismology, Volcanology, Meteorology and Hydrology (INSIVUMEH), are based close to Guatemala’s active volcanoes, including Fuego and Santiaguito. Observers, located at each observatory, make observations and work with those in the local community to share information about the volcano. Our fundraising project will be working to strengthen their capacity and ability to serve these communities. — Each Friday we are […]

December 11, 2014

12:52 PM | Two Postdoc scholarships in Cancer Biology
Two Postdoc scholarships in Cancer Biology with focus on the EMT process at Umeå Centre for Molecular Medicine   Umeå Centre for Molecular Medicine (UCMM) ( is an interdisciplinary research centre with several research groups that study areas of biological and medical relevance. Localized in a tight environment of diverse biomedical laboratories, UCMM forms […]
10:39 AM | Fully funded Healing Foundation PhD Studentship available to UK/EU or international students 2
Title: The role of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during tissue repair and regeneration Supervisors: Professors Enrique Amaya and Ralf Paus, University of Manchester Application deadline: January 30, 2015 Description: There has been a resurgent interest in identifying the mechanisms by which various organisms are able to regenerate fully functional appendages and organs, as this information […]
10:24 AM | Fully funded Healing Foundation PhD Studentship available to UK/EU or international students 1
Title: The role and regulation of metabolic reprogramming during successful appendage regeneration Supervisors: Professors Enrique Amaya and Royston Goodacre, University of Manchester Application deadline: January 30, 2015 Description: Many vertebrate species, including fish, amphibians and reptiles, have the ability to regenerate their appendages following amputation [1,2]. The regeneration process coordinates a variety of biological processes, […]
10:24 AM | Guest Blog: Christopher and Logan cycle Britain’s Water for Burkina Faso’s Water
Yesterday we shared a blog written by Christopher Barry (University of Birmingham), outlining previous work in Burkina Faso with the charity ‘Friends in Action’. Christopher and Logan Mills (University of Warwick) are cycling 270 km from Bristol to Birmingham on the 12th and 13th December, in aid of ‘Friends in Action’, and here write about their latest contribution to this important work to provide clean water. Friends in Action We are excited to be supporting […]

December 10, 2014

3:07 PM | Travelling Fellowship deadline approaching!
Are you a postdoc or student planning to visit a collaborators lab? Then apply for a Development travelling fellowship! You can be awarded up to £2,500 (or currency equivalent) to offset travel costs and expenses, and there are no restrictions on nationality.   The deadline for application is the 31st of December. Find out more on the Travelling Fellowships […]
11:00 AM | Guest Blog: Water of Life Project – Safe Drinking Water in Burkina Faso
Christopher Barry was the winner of our Blog Competition in 2012, with this article on safe drinking water in Burkina Faso. Christopher was privileged to be able to visit Burkina Faso prior to writing this, a very rural country where a great number of people are dependent on drilled wells with hand pumps for clean water. In Ouagadougou he met Mark Collier, where they talked at length about hydrogeology in the country. Now a PhD student at the University of Birmingham, Christopher […]

December 09, 2014

6:34 AM | A Day in the Life of a Turtle lab
We are Juan Pascual-Anaya and Tatsuya Hirasawa, two postdoctoral fellows at RIKEN (Kobe, Japan), in the laboratory of Shigeru Kuratani. We both have been working for the last 4-5 years using turtles as a model organism in the laboratory, studying different aspects of the carapace development.   Three different turtles used in our lab.   […]

December 08, 2014

12:42 PM | Memory traces and autism
The ability to multitask is of great importance in present day society. Our environment bombards each of us with important cues and signals from both the external and internal world. […]
9:00 AM | #EGU15 – Some Sessions of Interest (1) – Education, Communication and Ethics
We’re expecting a strong GfGD presence again at the European Geosciences Union General Assembly in 2015. We note below a number of relevant sessions that our readers may like to get involved with. Deadline for abstracts is 7th January 2015. NH9.4/EOS19 **Natural Hazards Education, Communications and Policy-Practice Interface** This session addresses how we communicate and educate students, the public, policy makers, and practitioners about natural hazards. Although we welcome all […]

December 07, 2014

8:41 PM | Seeing cells from a different angle
Thanks to microscopy, scientists can compete with the most talented photographers and take the most astonishing pictures! Although I have been focusing on microscopy pictures in this blog, microscopy is not the only way to make pretty pictures of cells. In recent years, the rapid progress in sequencing technology has propelled this technique to the […]

December 05, 2014

9:00 AM | Images of Guatemala (7) – Volcano Art
The dramatic landscapes of Guatemala are an important source of inspiration for some of the creative arts being produced in Guatemala. The images above (from top to bottom) a shop selling paintings aimed at the tourist market, a wall painting as part of a commercial advertisement, and my own purchased collection of three hand painted ‘volcano’ tiles from a local artist based around Lake Atitlan. — Each Friday we are publishing an image from Guatemala to promote our […]

December 04, 2014

6:02 PM | A day in the life of a cnidarian lab
I presume the first question that comes into people’s mind when they read the title would be “What are cnidarians?” I also presume a logical follow-up question would be “Why are you working on cnidarians?” If you haven’t asked these questions, I suspect that you are either my colleague and are sitting in the office […]
11:46 AM | EuroStemCell November 2014 Newsletter: World Diabetes Day
Hello! We’d like to start by offering our congratulations to Dr Masayo Takahashi who won 2014 Stem Cell Person of year!  A fitting acknowledgement of her and her team’s, hard work. Also this month we marked World Diabetes Day on the 14th of November with a Twitter campaign and two pieces from the EC-funded HumEn research […]

December 03, 2014

12:31 PM | ¿Por qué le suceden cosas malas a gente buena?
Durante mi carrera como médico he tenido en ocasión la oportunidad de brindar consuelo a personas que por desgracia han perdido a una persona querida. Más de una vez he […]
10:50 AM | Guest Blog: GfGD UCL Event Report
Celia Willoughby, UCL Geography student and GfGD Ambassador, writes about a recent event… Wednesday 19th November, saw the first UCL GfGD lecture of the year, taken by guest speaker Prof. Richard Taylor. Professor of hydrogeology in UCL’s Geography Department, his most recent focus of research is the study of groundwater, and the effects of climate change on groundwater supplies. The application of scientific skills to facilitate global development is key in Prof. […]

December 02, 2014

2:03 PM | New Reviews Editor at Development!
Dear Node readers, My name is Andrea Aguilar and I am replacing Caroline Hendry, Development’s stem cells reviews editor, during her maternity leave. To spice things up a bit, I figured I would introduce myself using this short video.     For more information on our special issue about human development, visit our web page and read this post […]
1:20 PM | In Development this week (Vol. 141, Issue 24)
Here are the highlights from the current issue of Development:   Assessing the evolutionary origin of neural progenitors The nervous system of bilaterians arises from a small pool of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) that expressesSoxB genes, a family of transcription factors crucial for neurogenesis. The existence of NPCs has thus far been described in diverse species […]

December 01, 2014

7:30 PM | For kids, news coverage can bring distant tragedy home
Media coverage of disasters and other major events can have an emotional effect on kids. Experts suggest that parents limit news exposure and discuss tough topics.
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