Spring Symposium

2016 Spring Symposium

The Developmental Biology Training Program presents an exciting spring seminar series featuring four platform speakers who are tackling key problems in developmental biology with non-traditional model organisms.    
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Organogenesis & regeneration

The Stankunas laboratory investigates fundamental questions of how genes and proteins regulate organ development and regeneration. We study how cell signals interface with chromatin...
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Evolution of larval development

Research in Maslakova lab at the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology focuses on the evolution of embryonic and larval development in the understudied phylum...
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Teleost development & evolution

The Cresko and Postlethwait labs are studying the evolution of duplicated genes and genomes, and their relationship to organismal diversity. Half of all vertebrate...
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C. elegans cell division

The Bowerman lab uses genetics, molecular biology, and microscopy to study cytoskeletal regulation and function in the early Caenorhabditis elegans embryo. Many of the early...
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Host-microbe interactions & organ development

All animals exist in intimate associations with communities of microorganisms that play important roles in the hosts’ normal development and physiology, and under certain...
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Zebrafish bone development

How do the elements of the craniofacial skeleton arise, grow, and reshape? Zebrafish, with a sophisticated knowledge of its genetics and genomics, with favorable...
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Drosophila neurogenesis

Drosophila neural stem cells (called neuroblasts) divide asymmetrically to generate neurons while maintaining their undifferentiated state, and thus they can be used as a...

The University of Oregon has a rich tradition of innovative and interdisciplinary developmental biology research. Diverse and collaborative efforts range from molecular and cellular mechanisms of development to developmental neuroscience, evolution & development, developmental networks & genomics, organogenesis, disease modeling, and regenerative biology. Labs use model organisms including yeast, Neurospora, nematode worms, fruit flies, zebrafish, and mice. Notably, the UO is the birthplace of zebrafish developmental genetics.

The Developmental Biology graduate training program (DBP) prepares leaders of the next generation of rigorous, creative, and experimentally talented developmental biologists. Trainees develop the skills to lead research programs of their own, communicate discoveries to other scientists and the public, and teach future scientists. Individualized research training towards a Ph.D. degree within one of 23 diverse laboratories is the core of the program. Participating labs are in the Institute of Molecular Biology, Institute of Neuroscience, Institute of Ecology & Evolution, and the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology.

Trainees’ thesis research is built upon a recently revamped curricular foundation. Required graduate-level courses are Advanced Genetics and Developmental Genetics and one of Evolution of Development, Developmental Neurobiology, or Genomics Approaches. Additionally, trainees complete Advanced Biological Statistics in recognition of the integral nature of quantitative approaches to modern developmental biology research.

Research and coursework is enriched by a variety of broadening experiences: first year rotations, teaching, Institute retreats, annual student research reports, interactions with visiting speakers, and the Developmental & Cell Biology journal club. Career developmental activities support students interested in non-academic careers. A unique highlight is the annual student-organized Developmental Biology symposium, where the trainees host a group of leading scientists who share their research on a topic of the students’ choosing.

Interested UO graduate students apply for DBP-associated financial support, largely provided by a NIH Developmental Biology Training Grant (DTG), at the end of their first year after identifying a thesis lab and project. Students typically are appointed for two years, but must apply for continuing support having demonstrated outstanding progress. Application instructions are provided to eligible students in Spring term.

Prospective students should visit the Institute websites to learn how to apply to UO Ph.D. programs.

Financial support for the Developmental Biology program is provided by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (2T32HD007348-26) and the University of Oregon.