Breaking News
February 15, 2019 - Researchers uncover novel mechanism and potential new therapeutic target for Alzheimer’s
February 15, 2019 - Genetic variations in a fourth gene associated with higher ALL risk in Hispanic children
February 15, 2019 - Disruptive behavioral problems in kindergarten linked with lower employment earnings in adulthood
February 15, 2019 - New bioengineered device enhances the production of T-cells
February 15, 2019 - HDL proteome behaves like a tiny Velcro ball that is rolling on surfaces
February 15, 2019 - Puerto Rican children more likely to have poor or decreasing use of asthma inhalers
February 15, 2019 - Quality of patient care does not improve after physician-hospital integration
February 15, 2019 - Synopsys release new software for implant design and patient-specific planning
February 15, 2019 - 6 out of 10 hip replacements last 25 years or longer
February 15, 2019 - Health Tip: What You Should Know About Antibiotics
February 15, 2019 - New research challenges medical consensus that adenoids and tonsils significantly shrink during teenage years
February 15, 2019 - Discovery of weakness in a rare cancer could be exploited with drugs
February 15, 2019 - UVA scientists find potential explanation for mysterious cell death in Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s
February 15, 2019 - New rules requiring female athletes to lower testosterone levels are based on flawed data
February 15, 2019 - Researchers comprehensively sequence the human immune system
February 15, 2019 - Researchers study animal venoms to identify new medicines for treating diseases
February 15, 2019 - Movement of wrist bones revealed by MRI and computer modeling
February 15, 2019 - Philips introduces new premium digital X-ray room to help shorten patient wait times
February 15, 2019 - Women fare worse than men following aortic heart surgery, study finds
February 15, 2019 - High-protein and low-calorie diet helps older adults lose weight safely, shows study
February 15, 2019 - Drug microdosing effects may not measure up to big expectations
February 15, 2019 - Discharged, Dismissed: ERs Often Miss Chance To Set Overdose Survivors On ‘Better Path’
February 15, 2019 - A digitized lab environment to be showcased at smartLAB 2019
February 15, 2019 - Scientists uncover main mechanisms of fluconazole drug resistance
February 15, 2019 - New study seeks to understand how colibactin causes cancer
February 15, 2019 - Photoacoustic imaging accurately measures the temperature of deep tissues
February 15, 2019 - Large study finds no association between phthalate exposure and breast cancer risk
February 15, 2019 - New research explains presence of ‘natural’ magnetism in human cells
February 15, 2019 - Bio-Rad launches new digital PCR system and kit for monitoring treatment response in CML patients
February 15, 2019 - Scientists shed light on damaging cell effects linked to aging
February 15, 2019 - High intensity exercise may improve health by increasing gut microbiota diversity
February 15, 2019 - Apellis’ APL-2 Receives Orphan Drug Designation from the FDA for the Treatment of Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia
February 15, 2019 - Couples creating art or playing board games release ‘love hormone’
February 15, 2019 - Glimpsing The Future At Gargantuan Health Tech Showcase
February 15, 2019 - Common herbicide found to increase the risk of lymphoma
February 15, 2019 - Over-abundance of energy to cells could increase cancer risk
February 15, 2019 - Oxford Genetics appoints Jocelyne Bath as new Chief Operating Officer
February 15, 2019 - Castration-resistant metastatic prostate cancer responds to combination of immune checkpoint inhibitors
February 15, 2019 - Large-scale clinical trial begins to study liver transplantation between people with HIV
February 15, 2019 - Cannabis use among adolescents linked with increased risk of depression in adulthood
February 15, 2019 - Fractures, head injuries common in electric scooter accidents, UCLA study finds
February 15, 2019 - Prenatal maternal depression has important consequences for infant temperament, study shows
February 15, 2019 - Stereotactic body radiotherapy effective in treating men with low- or intermediate-risk prostate cancer
February 15, 2019 - Zogenix Submits New Drug Application to U.S. Food & Drug Administration for Fintepla for the Treatment of Dravet Syndrome
February 15, 2019 - Certain birthmarks warrant quick treatment, pediatricians say
February 15, 2019 - New machine learning method predicts if atypical ductal hyperplasia will turn cancerous
February 15, 2019 - Whole-genome sequencing and sharing real-time data could limit spread of foodborne bacteria
February 15, 2019 - FDA warns doctor for illegally marketing unapproved implantable device
February 15, 2019 - New injury documentation tool may provide better evidence for elder abuse cases
February 15, 2019 - Physiological age is a better predictor of survival than chronological age, shows study
February 15, 2019 - New study reveals high success rate for hip and knee replacements
February 15, 2019 - Prenatal exposures to BPA may pose threat to human ovarian function
February 15, 2019 - Suspicious spots on the lungs of children with rhabdomyosarcoma do not behave like metastases
February 15, 2019 - Diet drinks daily could raise stroke risk says study
February 15, 2019 - Many Systematic Reviews Do Not Fully Report Adverse Events
February 15, 2019 - Seven tips to protect your child from burns
February 15, 2019 - Keynote speakers announced for CBD Expo MIDWEST
February 15, 2019 - New DNA methylation GrimAge tool allows you to predict lifespan and healthspan
February 15, 2019 - New AI-driven platform analyze how pathogens infect human cells
February 15, 2019 - Increased activity of EHMT2 gene deficient neurons could cause autism in humans
February 15, 2019 - Recurring UTIs may mask symptoms of bladder or kidney cancer
February 15, 2019 - Researchers conduct extensive comparison of drugs used in treating neuroendocrine tumors
February 15, 2019 - Depression prevention for pregnant women and new mothers – new recommendations
February 15, 2019 - AHA News: Are There Health Benefits From Chocolate?
February 15, 2019 - The involvement of the gut in Parkinson’s disease: hype or hope?
February 15, 2019 - New PET imaging agent may help measure efficacy or failure of hormone therapy for breast cancer
February 15, 2019 - Preventing infections could help combat antimicrobial resistance
February 15, 2019 - Study investigates the role of estrogen in controlling glucose homeostasis
February 15, 2019 - Exposure to chemical in weedkiller Roundup raises risk of some cancers, study finds
February 15, 2019 - Smoking and drinking during pregnancy – stigma drives women to secrecy
February 15, 2019 - Low FODMAP diet reduces stomach issues caused by exercise
February 15, 2019 - Novel approach uses small amounts of tissue to quantify PD-L1 expression levels in tumors
February 15, 2019 - Breast pumps could be transmitting asthma-causing bacteria in babies, finds study
February 15, 2019 - The Pistoia Alliance Launches Next Phase of Blockchain Project to Develop Life Science R&D Use Cases
February 15, 2019 - The search for environmental causes of Parkinson’s disease moves forward
February 15, 2019 - Women scientists inhibited by funding methods that favor men, researchers say
February 14, 2019 - Few primary care physicians lack enough knowledge of cancer treatment options
February 14, 2019 - Prime real estate is determined by previous owner in the squirrel world
February 14, 2019 - Discovery of a ‘master switch’ within the immune system
February 14, 2019 - Health officers with surgical training are a safe alternative for performing C-sections
UCR postdoctoral researcher wins prestigious NIH fellowship to study neural crest cells

UCR postdoctoral researcher wins prestigious NIH fellowship to study neural crest cells

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

Rebekah Charney, a postdoctoral researcher in the School of Medicine at the University of California, Riverside, has been awarded the prestigious Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research of the National Institutes of Health.

The fellowship provides $177,000 to support Charney for three years to study the earliest events underlying the formation of neural crest cells.

Charney, who joined UCR in 2016 after receiving her doctoral degree at UC Irvine, explained that neural crest cells are a stem cell population unique to vertebrates. They migrate extensively throughout the developing embryo and form numerous derivatives, including neurons, pigment cells, and most of the bone and connective tissue in the face. Their improper development leads to multiple pathologies, including very common birth defects such as cleft lip and cleft palate and aggressive cancers such as neuroblastoma. However, major questions regarding the formation of neural crest cells remain unanswered.

“The molecular mechanisms underlying the earliest stages of neural crest cell formation remain uncharacterized, and this fellowship precisely aims to address this issue,” Charney said.

At UCR, Charney works in the laboratory of Martín I. García-Castro, an associate professor of biomedical sciences. Under the fellowship, Charney will be sponsored by Garcia-Castro and co-sponsored by Nicole zur Nieden, an associate professor in the Department of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology. On the research project, Charney will also collaborate with Thomas Girke, an associate professor of bioinformatics at UCR.

“The research enabled by this fellowship brings together multiple research groups from across the UCR campus,” Charney said. “Together, we will integrate cutting-edge, genome-wide technology with embryology and stem cell biology in order to uncover the processes underlying key developmental decisions.”

García-Castro, her sponsor, emphasized that this is the first instance this fellowship has been awarded to a postdoctoral researcher performing work in the School of Medicine since accreditation. “Dr. Charney is an outstanding postdoctoral scholar who joined the Division of Biomedical Sciences with a glowing academic record,” he said. “Since her arrival, Rebekah has made great strides in her research implementing creative approaches to decipher the molecular interactions that initiate the formation of the neural crest, and has been very successful in crafting research funding applications and getting our research published.

“She is a smart, tenacious and tireless scientist who has already been recognized for her capacity and promise to lead a very productive research career in academia,” he continued. “At the same time, she has distinguished herself through service towards other members of the School of Medicine and UCR community, including envisioning and initiating workshops for postdoctoral scholars, and mentoring undergrads. I am thrilled to have her performing her postdoctoral work with us, and look forward to her continued positive impact on the UCR and scientific community.”

Charney’s work under this fellowship pioneers gene network studies of neural crest cell specification at previously uncharacterized early stages of development. Neural crest cells are thought to arise from committed ectoderm cells – one of the three germ layers that serve as the foundation for the tissues and organs that make up the adult body – in a region of the embryo called the neural plate border. Evidence from the García-Castro laboratory and others, however, suggest a much earlier origin of neural crest cells that is prior to the committed segregation of the germ layers.

“The goal of this work is to investigate how transcription factors function in regulating the earliest stages of neural crest formation,” Charney said. “Using CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing technology, select genes will be removed from human embryonic stem cells, and I will assess the effect of their loss on the formation of human neural crest cells. The role of these factors will also be tested in animal models of development, for example in the chick embryo.”

Charney noted that the immediate outcomes of the research are addressing key biological questions of neural crest formation and processes governing cell fate decisions during development. Understanding how neural crest cells are formed, and how this process is disrupted in a disease state, however, can help lead to novel therapeutics. Such projects are already underway in the García-Castro lab.

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles