Huge congratulations to Vivien (soon to be Dr Sotiriou) for passing her PhD viva in September 2020! Thank-you to the examiners Prof Malcolm Logan from King’s College London and Dr Neal Bangerter for a thoughtful and in-depth virtual viva. Thanks also to the group and alumni who joined the virtual celebrations afterwards!
Saima is leaving our group and we will miss her so much! We are excited however to continue working on all the lovely data and papers in preparation. Saima will start studying medicine in the Autumn, and we wish her the very best in her studies.
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!! **
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!!!
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.
The group celebrated an “eco-friendly” Secret Santa this year, with homemade or edible gifts being the rule. Some very tasty treats were shared, but the best gift was definitely the “mini Kaushik” that Yuming made, complete with computer and signature water bottle. Kudos Yuming! The secret santa fun was followed by a very nice Indian meal in South Kensington. Happy Christmas from all the Nowlan group!
The entire group (including alumnus Stefaan) traveled to Dublin for the 2018 World Congress of Biomechanics in July. Between us, we presented seven talks and one poster, as listed below. Aurélie and Kaushik also presented abstracts based on their PhD projects. Niamh was Co-Chair for the ‘Emerging Areas’ Track and a Session Chair for the “Biomechanics of Musculoskeletal Development” session. A particular highlight of the meeting was Stefaan giving a plenary lecture to mark the Perren Award.
Aurélie: Critical timings of fetal mobility for spine and rib development
Cristian: Frequency and duration of mechanical stimulation influence mineralisation of developing chick limbs cultured in vitro
Devi: Timing of movement is essential for cavitation and morphogenesis of the developing chick hip joint
Kaushik: Musculoskeletal forces and prenatal skeletogenesis: a murine model
Niamh: Directing cartilage growth in vitro: learning from developmental biology
Saima: Characterisation of collagen distribution in the prenatal forelimb using immunofluorescence and high-resolution microscopy
Stefaan: Biomechanical stimulation of the fetal skeleton linked to risk factors for developmental dysplasia of the hip
Vivien: Shoulder joint shape is rescued as development progresses when limb musculature is absent in the murine embryo
(Image credits: Cristian Parisi, Devi Bridglal, @WCB2018, Saima Ahmed, Aurélie Levillain)