Watching the eclipse in style!

We enjoyed watching the solar eclipse today (August 21, 2017)! A fun outing followed by a good gelato.


Patrick and Stefano publish a Preview article in Dev Cell

Patrick and I wrote a Preview article on a very nice paper from the lab of Stas Shvartsman at Princeton. Stas and his colleagues discovered some interesting regulation of the synthesis of dNTP during embryonic development. You can find our Preview here

Stefano gives a talk at the SDB meeting

Stefano was an invited speaker at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Developmental Biology. He presented Victoria’s work on the synchronization of the cell cycle during Drosophila embryonic development. The meeting was a lot of fun and a great chance to see so many old friends and mentors.


Cell Biology Retreat

We just came back from a fantastic Departmental Retreat. Science was great and so were all the social activities. Ben and Victoria gave very nice talks and Alessandro, Patrick and Woon presented posters. To keep a good lab tradition, Patrick won the prize for best movie (as well as getting an honorable mention for his poster!) and Woon got an honorable mention for his movie. The lab also won the lab olympics confirming that we are truly a multi-talented group of people (photo is from Woon).


Woon passes his qualifying exam 

Congratulations to Woon on passing his qualifying exam.

Stefano gives a talk at Penn State

Stefano presented the work of Victoria, Amir and Patrick at Penn State on February 6. There are a lot of people doing interesting biology and it was great to interact with them. Lunch with the students was a special treat. Special thanks to Lucy Bai for the invitation and for hosting.

Victoria and Stefano among others discuss their views on the interaction between physics and biology at the Winter School in Trieste

You can read the piece on the ICTP website here

Winter School in Trieste, Italy

Most lab members participated in the Quantitative Systems Biology Winter School at ICTP, Trieste, Italy. Stefano was one of the Directors and also gave three lectures on the regulation of the cell cycle during development and on chemical waves. Everybody had a great time and the quality of the school was truly amazing, as the location (photos below are courtesy of Victoria).


View from the Miramare’s park near the Adriatico guest house

You can find more information about the school here.

The School also provided fun moments for lab members to hang out together, do some sightseeing and spend time with Stefano’s postdoctoral mentor Eric Wieschaus:


Ponte di Rialto, Venice, Italy


View of Venice, Italy


Duino’s castle, Italy


Piazza Unita’ d’Italia, Trieste, Italy

Alessandro receives a Fellowship from the Swiss National Science Foundation

Congratulations to Alessandro upon receiving a Fellowship from the SNSF! He will start in the lab on January 3 and we are very excited to have him with us soon.

Val’s and Alberto’s paper out in Current Biology

This beautiful study from Val and Alberto on lineage tracing of blastema cells in the regenerating zebrafish fin is now out in Current Biology. The paper presents significant insights on the cellular  dynamics that drive regeneration. You can read the paper here:


Stefano gives a talk at NC State

Stefano gave an Allen Distinguished Microscopy Seminar at NC State on November 9, presenting the work of Victoria, Amir and Patrick. It was fun to meet so many good people. Special thanks to Greg Reeves for the invitation.


Forum  in Cell Stem Cell

Ken and I published a Forum in Cell Stem Cell where we discuss the importance of quantitative in toto imaging of regeneration. It was a fun piece to write and an interesting challenge to fit all our ideas in the short format. You can read the paper here:


Victoria receives an HHMI International Student Research Fellowship

Victoria is among a small group of international students who will receive a very prestigious fellowship from HHMI this year. This completes a very successful month for her. The press release can be found here:


She is also featured on the Duke Research Blog:


She will also receive another year of support for her outreach activities in El Salvador from the Faculty for the Future Fellowship (Schlumberger Foundation). Victoria will continue to organize events to encourage Salvadorian young women to consider careers in Science.

Victoria’s paper published in Developmental Cell

This paper describes how waves of Cdk1 activity synchronize the cell cycle of early Drosophila embryos. It was a fun collaboration with Anna Melbinger and Massimo Vergassola at UCSD.

The paper can be found here:

Wave paper

Stefano gives a talk at the KITP, UCSB

Stefano talked about Victoria’s and Amir’s work at the From Genes to Growth and Form program at the KITP. You can watch the talk here.

Amir’s paper accepted at Cell Reports

The paper describing Amir’s PhD work in the Wieschaus’ lab was accepted at Cell Reports. This is an interesting genetic study identifying several rate-limiting regulators of 2 mitotic domains and providing support for the idea that the timing of cell division during Drosophila gastrulation is encoded by the same transcription factors regulating the spatial pattern.

Stefano gives a talk in the  Department of Physics at Georgetown University

Stefano presented the work of Victoria and Woon at Georgetown on July 25. There are a lot of people doing interesting soft matter physics and it was great to interact with them. Special thanks to Emanuela Del Gado for the invitation and for hosting.

Stefano was featured as an alumnus of The Rockefeller University graduate program

You can read about this short piece here:

Graduate Program

It was fun to be reminded of the great time I had at Rockefeller!

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