UFC 2018 KEYNOTE SPEAKERS
Dr. Draper's lab uses the zebrafish to study the genetic regulation of vertebrate gonad formation and function. The three main focuses in the lab include: the role of fibroblast growth factor signaling in development of the early vertebrate gonad; the mechanism of germline stem cell specification and maintenance; 3) the role of oocyte-derived signals in primary female sex determination and maintenance of the adult sexual phenotype. Using a combination of genetic, molecular and cellular biological methods to investigate these processes, both Dr. Draper and his lab have contributed significantly to the field of developmental and reproductive biology.
Dr. North's lab studies developmental hematopoiesis as a key to uncover general principles of stem cell function, self-renewal, tissue regeneration, and cancer. They use genetic methods and chemical biology in zebrafish to identify pathways regulating hematopoietic niche formation, stem cell induction, and function. The three main focuses in the lab include: 1) characterization of novel regulators of hemogenic endothelium induction and HSC function; 2) the biological rationale for the shifting hemogenic niches in the vertebrate organism; 3) the impact of environmental factors on embryonic hematovasculogenesis, including potential for subsequent diseases. Dr. North and her lab have demonstrated expertise in hematopoiesis, hemogenic endothelium development, embryonic inflammatory regulation, developmental metabolism and translation across species.