Two-photon confocal image of a live e7.5 mouse embryo expressing mGFP in the primitive streak (center) and mesoderm, and mTomato in all other tissues. Courtesy of Margot Williams, Dr. Ann Sutherland's lab
The Cell Biology and Developmental Biology Programs at UVA feature rich and diverse training in modern cell and developmental biology from a creative and internationally-recognized faculty.

These programs highlight cutting-edge interests in morphogenesis and regenerative biology.  Ongoing research addresses fundamental issues at both the cellular level (membrane and cytoskeletal dynamics, signal transduction, mitosis, cell adhesion, motility, mechanotransduction, polarity) and higher-order processes such as embryonic patterning, morphogenetic movements, tissue morphogenesis and repair. These issues are examined in contexts that include cell culture models, differentiated tissues, patterning embryos, and tissues during development and wound repair.

Studies employing engineered mutant mice, Drosophila, Xenopus, and Zebrafish offer a range of venues for investigating fundamental mechanisms, their relationship to morphogenesis, and their dysfunction in human diseases.  Research in all of these areas employ the latest cell, molecular, biophysical, and microscopic technologies.

These programs foster a culture of collaboration that extends beyond any single department. Students commonly participate in institution-wide training programs in cancer biologycell biology and molecular biologybiotechnology, and cardiovascular research. The collegial and highly interactive learning environment incorporates seminars, journal clubs, colloquia, and research-in-progress presentations by students, postdocs, and faculty.

Faculty

  • Roger Abounader
    Basic and translational brain tumor research
  • Paul N. Adler
    Planar signaling, polarity and morphogenesis.
  • Mazhar Adli
    Understanding and manipulating the genetics and epigenetics information to study stem cells, differentiation and cancer
  • Herve Agaisse
    Genetic approaches, cellular and molecular biology of intracellular pathogen infection
  • Timothy P. Bender
    Regulation of gene expression during lymphocyte development
  • Stuart S. Berr
    Developing magnetic resonance (MR) techniques as a tool for basic biomedical research.
  • Michelle Bland
    Molecular mechanisms linking inflammation and insulin signaling to control cell growth and metabolism
  • George S. Bloom
    Pathogenic mechanisms in Alzheimer's Disease and other neurodegenerative disorders
  • Amy H. Bouton
    Signaling Pathways and Breast Cancer
  • David L. Brautigan
    Protein Phosphorylation in Cell Signaling
  • James E. Casanova
    Role of Arf family GTPases in vesicular transport and cytoskeleton assembly.
    Cell Biology of bacterial pathogenesis.
    The innate immune response to bacterial infection.
  • J. David Castle
    Intracellular cholesterol and the regulation of insulin secretion and membrane trafficking.
  • Barry G. Condron
    Regulation and Function Serotonergic Neurons During Development
  • Carl E. Creutz
    Calcium-dependent, membrane-binding proteins and mechanisms of exocytosis
  • Alison K. Criss
    Cellular and molecular mechanisms of Neisserial pathogenesis
  • Claire R. Cronmiller
    Genetic Regulation of Morphogenesis and Reproduction in Drosophila
  • Douglas W. DeSimone
    Cell Adhesion and Adhesion-Dependent Cell Signaling in Vertebrate Morphogenesis
  • Christopher Deppmann
    Elucidating and Understanding the Mechanisms Underlying Nervous System Development
  • Isabelle Derre
    Host/pathogen Interaction - Chlamydia Infection
  • Bimal N. Desai
    Electrical signals in inflammation and immunity
  • Anindya Dutta
    Genomic Instability in Cancer Cells; Noncoding RNAs in differentiation and cancer
  • Noelle Dwyer
    Neural Development; Cell Division in Neural Stem Cells; Axon Outgrowth and Guidance
  • Robin A. Felder
    Clinical Chemistry and Toxicology. Medical Automation Research. Neurotransmitters, cell surface receptors and intracellular second messengers.
  • Jay W. Fox
    Basement Membrane Structure and Metalloproteinases
  • Cassandra L. Fraser
    Polymeric Metal Complexes. Metallobiomaterials for Medicine and Biotechnology. Bio-inspired and Sustainable Design. Responsive Nanoscale Assemblies.
  • Zheng "John" Fu
    Cell signaling of protein kinases in development and disease
  • Andreas Gahlmann
    Bacterial cell biology at the molecular level
  • Daniel Gioeli
    Signal transduction in cancer cells
  • Adam N. Goldfarb
    Hematopathology and Understanding the Molecular Basis of Hematopoiesis and Leukemogenesis
  • R. Ariel Gomez
    Ontogeny of renin-angiotensis system, differentiation of the JG cell.
  • Robert M. Grainger
    Molecular embryology--gene regulation in cells committed to specific developmental lineages
  • William H. Guilford
    Molecular Mechanics of Muscle Contraction and Cell Movement
  • Adrian J. Halme
    Regeneration and Systemic Responses to Tissue Damage
  • Marie-Louise Hammarskjöld
    Post Transcriptional Gene Regulation and the Molecular Biology of Human Retroviruses
  • Barry T. Hinton
    Morphogenesis of the Developing Wolffian/Epididymal duct
  • Brant Isakson
    Intercellular communication as it relates to blood pressure regulation
  • Kevin A. Janes
    Systems-biology approaches to cancer biology and virology.
  • David F Kashatus
    The Role of Mitochondrial Fusion and Fission in Tumorigenesis.
  • Raymond E. Keller
    Cellular and molecular mechanisms of morphogenesis
  • Susanna R. Keller
    Insulin signaling, insulin-regulated membrane trafficking and associated changes in cellular function and whole body physiology
  • Mark Kester
    Nanotechnologies for targeted drug delivery
  • Jonathan Kipnis
    Neuroimmunology and glia biology in cognition, neurodevelopment and neurodegeneration
  • Sarah C Kucenas
    The role of glia in the development, maintenance and regeneration of the nervous system
  • Victor E. Laubach
    Translational research into understanding cell and molecular mechanisms of lung ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury following transplantation and defining new therapeutic targets to prevent such injury.
  • Gordon W. Laurie
    Role of Prosecretory Mitogen 'Lacritin' in Epithelial Homeostasis, Secretion and Innate Defense
  • Matthew Lazzara
    Cellular Engineering
  • Kevin S. Lee
    Neuronal Vulnerability: A Study of Cellular Mechanism
  • Norbert Leitinger
    Role of lipid oxidation products in inflammation and vascular immunology in atherosclerosis and diabetes
  • Hui Li
    Gene regulation in cancer, RNA processing; Epigenetic modification.
  • John R. Lukens
    Neuroinflammatory disease
  • Michael J McConnell
    The Cause and Consequence of Somatic Mosaicism in Neurons
  • Eyleen Jorgelina O'Rourke
    Obesity and Aging
  • Gary K. Owens
    Epigenetic Control of Perivascular and Stem Cell Plasticity/Trans-Differentiation during Injury-Repair and in Disease
  • Kwon-Sik Park
    Mechanisms of tumor progression and homeostasis
  • Bryce M. Paschal
    Nuclear Transport, Signaling, and Cancer
  • Shayn M. Peirce-Cottler
    Tissue Engineering and Regeneration, Computational Systems Biology, Vascular Growth and Remodeling, Stem Cell Therapies
  • Lucy F. Pemberton
    Nuclear Transport in Chromatin Assembly and Transcriptional Regulation
  • K. Kevin Pfister
    Regulation of Cytoplasmic Dynein for Membrane Bounded Organelle Trafficking in Axons
  • Benjamin W. Purow
    Novel therapeutic approaches to brain cancers and to other neurologic diseases
  • Kodi S. Ravichandran
    Apoptotic cell clearance mechanisms in health and disease
  • David M. Rekosh
    Human Immunodeficiency; Virus Gene Expression
  • Dorothy A. Schafer
    Mechanisms of actin assembly during cell migration and membrane traffic
  • Jung-Bum Shin
    Auditory Neurobiology
  • Sarah Siegrist
    Regulation of neural stem cell proliferation by extracellular factors, local and systemic. Intrinsic signaling programs regulating neural stem cell fate decisions: death versus survival. Functional and molecular similarities between Drosophila and mammal
  • M. Mitchell Smith
    Functional Genomics of Histones, Chromatin, and Protein Acetylation Signaling in Cancer and the Cell Cycle
  • P. Todd Stukenberg
    Mechanisms of chromosome segregation in Mitosis and generation of Chromosomal Instability in tumors
  • Ann E. Sutherland
    Cell Matrix Interactions In Mouse Development
  • Christine I. Thisse
    Molecular Mechanisms of Early Vertebrate Development and Morphogenesis. Application to Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine
  • Bernard V. Thisse
    Molecular control of embryonic development
  • Judith M. White
    Virus Entry into Cells: Mechanisms and Development of Anti-Viral Therapeutics
  • Bettina Winckler
    Endosomal function and dysfunction in neurons
  • W. Michael Wormington
    Regulation of miRNA Processing and Function During Oogenesis and Embryogenesis
  • David Wotton
    Regulation of Gene Expression, Development and Tumor Progression by TGF beta Signaling
  • Jing Yu
    Mammalian kidney development
  • Scott O. Zeitlin
    Mechanisms of Huntington's Disease Pathogenesis
  • J. Julius Zhu
    Neural Circuits in Healthy and Diseased Brains
  • Hui Zong
    Mouse models of brain cancers