College of Graduate Studies
Genetics and Development
| Andy Wessels, Ph.D. - Division Director|
The Division of Genetics and Development offers training and research in the field of genetics and developmental biology, which utilizes a variety of animal models to assess the gene functions in embryonic development. Modern developmental genetics has become the central organizing field in all traditional disciplines in biology, such as cell biology, molecular biology, anatomy, evolution, and ecology. It has also contributed greatly to more practical fields such as medicine, environmental science and agriculture. The model systems studied by the faculty members include Drosophila (fruit fly) for oogenesis and vascular system development, zebrafish for environmental impact on embryogenesis, Xenopus (frog) for neurogenesis, chick for the formation of cardiovascular system, mice for a variety of organogenesis such as limb and follicle development, hematopoiesis, heart formation and mammary development, and human familial diseases for genetic linkage studies. In addition to transgenic and knockout technology, a variety of cell culture systems, including those for human stem cells, are utilized in the research.
Time-lapse confocal laser scanning picture of changing gene expression in the developing heart tube.
Drosophila trachea marked by immunohistochemistry and observed by confocal laser microscopy. The wild-type embryo (upper pane) shows an intricate network of tubular structure. The network is disrupted in mutants of the Drosophila oncogene pnt (lower panel).
The picture shows a new-born mouse [top] defective in hair follicle development as compared to the normal animal [bottom]. The defect is induced by Hox gene over-expression.
Genetics & Development Course Descriptions
MCBP 743 - Cellular signaling during Development
This course is designed to build on the Regulation of Gene Expression, Biomembranes, Receptors and Signaling and Systems Biology units of the first year curriculum for Ph.D and complement ongoing Department-specific seminars and journal clubs. Cellular Signaling during development will provide the students with an indepth look at ongoing research in the field of developmental biology with a strong focus on the signaling networks that control these important processes. It will allow for a broad scope of understanding of the techniques, theories and practices involved in the delineation of cellular signaling in complex systems. Offered every Spring Semester.
Director: Robin C. Muise-Helmericks, Ph.D.
MCBP 762 - Mechanisms of Development
This course will provide a current multidisciplinary view of the processes governing embryonic development. It will consist of four major sections: (1) the morphological and molecular events underlying organ formation in muitlpe model organisms (fly, fish, frog, bird, mouse, and human); (2) gene regulation of developmental processes, including axis formation, embryonic patterning and cell lineage determination; (3) cell biology of the embryo, including a discussion of stem cells, cell migration, apoptosis, cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions; and (4) an in-depth examination of selected organ systems (brain, cardiovascular system, and limb). The course is intended for graduate students. Offered in the Fall Semester of alternate years.
Course Director: Yukiko Sugi, Ph.D.
MCBP 779 - Immunogenetics
Initial lectures will review the fundamental principles of genetics. The principle focus of the course will be the genetics of human MHC and immunoglobulin allotypes. Major blood genes will also be discussed. Statistical methods employed in delineating the genetic contribution to human diseases will be reviewed.
Course Director: Janardan Pandey, Ph.D.
Genetics & Development Faculty
Alexander Awgulewitsch, Ph.D.
Philip H. Howe, Ph.D.
Jennifer Isaacs, Ph.D.
Christine B. Kern, Ph.D.
Roger R. Markwald, Ph.D.
Russell A. Norris, Ph.D.
Janardan P. Pandey, B.S., M.S., Ph.D.