Departments & Organizations
We are interested in how embryonic pattern is generated and the resultant congenital malformations that occur when patterning fails. During development, the egg must activate a cascade of genes in order to form our body structure and establish correct pattern along the body axes. We are deeply interested in the gene regulatory networks that are necessary to create critical signals in specific embryonic locations at appropriate developmental stages. These signals must be carefully orchestrated in order to generate forms that are essential to function and the overall fitness of the organism.
Our main approach is gene discovery from patients with congenital malformations, and then study them in our rapid, human model, Xenopus tropicalis. Recently, the remarkable advances in human genetics/genomics is transforming our understanding of the causes of congenital malformations. Traditionally gene discovery in these patients was very challenging, but new sequencing technologies enable gene discovery in these patients. In human studies, we have identified many new genes and are analyzing their patterning mechanisms in Xenopus. Combining human genetics with a high-throughput model system has allowed us to discover new genetic mechanisms and novel understanding of how development proceeds.
Education & Training
|MD||Northwestern University Medical School (1995)|
|BS||Northwestern University (1991)|
|Fellow||Molecular & Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley|
|Fellow||Pediatric Critical Care, University of California, San Francisco|
|Resident||Resident Pediatrics, St. Louis Children's Hospital, 1995-98|
Honors & Recognition
Mallinckrodt ScholarEdward Mallinckrodt, Jr. Foundation (2014)
Mae Gailani Junior Faculty Teaching AwardYale University (2010)
Harvey Colten AwardWashington University (2009)
Pediatric Scientist Development Program (PSDP) Fellow (1996)
Kingsley Fellowship in Medical Research (1996)
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Medical Student Research Fellow (1993)