Saima‘s paper funded by the ERC characterising the collagens in the developing skeletal rudiment was published in eCM. We used immuno-fluorescence to look at the major and minor collagens in sections of the humerus at TS22 (e13.5, before formation of the primary ossification centre), TS25 (e15.5) and TS27 (e17.5).
Several collagens change substantially with the progression of the ossification centre, like for example Col V.
Some develop amazingly complex structures over the period of development studied, like Col II (green) and XI (grey).
Congratulations Saima on this beautiful work!
Big congratulations to Devi, who passed her PhD viva. Her thesis is entitled “The role of movement in early embryonic joint development”. Many thanks to the examiners, Prof Neil Vargesson and Dr Angela Kedgley. Devi is now studying graduate entry medicine at King’s College London so will be a double-doctor in a few years time! Well done Devi!
Best wishes to Aurélie, who is finishing up in the group. We had a lovely send-off for her in South Kensington with lunch and ice-cream from Oddono’s! Lucky for us, Aurélie isn’t moving too far away, and will be doing some exciting research in David Labonte‘s group, also in the Department of Bioengineering.
** March 2020: Update- Aurélie was awarded a Marie Curie Skodowska fellowship to return to her native France- Congratulations Aurélie!! **
Vivien‘s first first-author paper entitled “Effects of Abnormal Muscle Forces on Prenatal Joint Morphogenesis in Mice” has been published in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research. The paper characterises the effects of absent or reduced muscle on prenatal development of the major synovial joints. Vivien used image registration to qualitatively and quantitatively compare joint shapes between muscleless, reduced-muscle and normal mice. Different joints were affected more than others, and what we found most interesting is that a reduction in muscle often led to *more* severe effects than no muscle- like in the humeral distal condyles (blue: control, yellow: reduced-muscle, purple: muscleless)
Congratulations Vivien! You can access the final version of the paper here, or the submitted version here if you don’t have access to JOR.
The Developmental Biomechanics group headed en masse to a sunny and hot Barcelona for the EMBO Workshop on Limb Development and Regeneration: New Tools for a Classic Model System. Niamh and Yuming gave talks while Devi, James, Josepha, Nidal, Pati (our talented MEng project student!) and Vivien presented posters. Devi and Pati also gave flash talks to highlight the work in their posters. The group enjoyed sampling the lovely Catalan food and the sea swimming right beside the conference venue!
Niamh presented an invited talk at the 9th International Conference on Children’s Bone Health (ICCBH) in Salzburg from the 22-25th June 2019. The meeting provided an interesting forum for presenting the group’s research as many of the participants are from an endocrinology background.
A bittersweet farewell to Kaushik who leaves the group to take up a faculty position at IIT Delhi. We will miss you Kaushik but look forward to continuing to collaborate and to all the great achievements that will your future will bring!
Cristian is leaving Imperial College to take up an exciting new position in industry with global healthcare company BTG. We are very sorry to lose him but wish him all the best with the next step of his career- good luck Cristian!!!
Saima and Niamh both gave presentations at the 2019 Orthopaedic Research Society in Austin Texas in early February. Saima presented her NIRA-shortlisted work on “Muscle loading determines distribution of collagens in the developing skeleton” while Niamh gave an invited talk to the ORS Tendon Section on “The biomechanics and mechanobiology of skeletogenesis”
A warm welcome to Nidal Khatib who joined the Developmental Biomechanics group in January. Nidal will be using our mechanostimulation bioreactor system to explore mechanotransductory pathways and mechanisms acting during prenatal skeletal development. His project is a collaboration with Prof David Hoey from Trinity College Dublin, and is funded by Niamh’s ERC Starting Grant.