UPenn Cell & Developmental Biology
For CDB resources for external funding, please click here.
Our department is home to both junior faculty, infusing the department with energy, novel approaches and ideas, and to senior faculty who are established leaders in their research areas, including a Howard Hughes Investigator and a member of the National Academy of Science.
Our developmental biology faculty are immersed in virtually all aspects of organismal development, from mechanisms of cell signaling to transcriptional control of the intricate regulatory programs that guide development.
Our cell biology faculty focus their studies on cellular processes that occur during development or that maintain homeostasis in adult organisms, such as cell division, cell motility, muscle structure and function, cell signaling and signal transduction, cell and molecular recognition.
The faculty take advantage of both the traditional and the newer model systems. Using various systems, representing both invertebrates and vertebrates, allows us to experimentally investigate complex processes, such as embryonic development, and identify the common themes used across species, as well as the specialization that make each species unique.
The Yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae - Bi
Infectious Microorganisms, Toxoplasma - Murray
Cultured Cells - Weisel
The Frog - Kessler
The Fruitfly - DiNardo, Ghabrial
The Mouse - Bartolomei, Simon, Epstein
The Rat - Rubinstein
The Zebrafish - Granato, Mullins
In addition, our faculty use the full spectrum of modern tools for their investigations, providing research training in genetics as well as molecular and cell biological technologies, including cell and embryo culture, transgenesis, gene knockouts, light and electron microscopy, laser tweezers and image analyses. Furthermore, they capitalize on the wealth of information and the newest technologies provided for by the various organism-based genome sequencing projects (e.g., RNAi, morphlino-based "knock-downs", microarray profiling of gene expression, detection of GFP-proteins in living cells).
Research Areas in Developmental Biology:
- The establishment of the body axis and the induction ectoderm, mesoderm, endoderm (Kessler, Mullins)
- Patterning of the germ layers along the body axis (DiNardo, Kessler, Mullins)
- The differentiation of cells within these germ layers into specialized tissues and organs, such as: