Department of Molecular and Cell Biology

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Heald and Nomura: Cellular Basis of Hybrid Incompatibility

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 21:25

Research from the labs of MCB Professor Rebecca Heald and Associate Professor Daniel Nomura has revealed the cellular basis of hybrid incompatibility when closely related frog species are interbred.

This finding uncovers why the offspring of female African clawed frogs and male Western clawed frogs can survive, whereas offspring with the opposite set of parent species are incapable of living past the early stages of development.


Hammond, Miller and Savage Identified as "Future of Biochemistry"

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 20:40

Ming Hammond (Assistant Professor, MCB & Chemistry), Evan Miller (Assistant Professor, MCB & Chemistry), and David Savage (Associate Professor, MCB & Chemistry) have been "identified as representing the future of biochemistry" by the American Chemical Society.

Hammond, Miller, Savage, and 41 other early career biochemical scientists are featured in the January 2018 publication of Biochemistry.


Saving Chocolate with CRISPR

Wed, 01/03/2018 - 00:36

Professor of MCB & Chemistry and HHMI Investigator, Jennifer Doudna, is overseeing a collaboration among the Innovative Genomics Institute at Berkeley and Mars Chocolate to apply CRISPR to cacao crops. As climate change warms and dries the rainforests where cacao plants thrive, researchers are looking for ways to produce crops that will better withstand environmental changes.


Working on a CRISPR Cure of Lou Gehrig's Disease

Tue, 01/02/2018 - 11:24

MCB Professor of Neurobiology and of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering David Schaffer and colleagues "have for the first time used CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing to disable a defective gene that causes amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease, in mice, extending their lifespan by 25 percent."


Read the Fall 2017 MCB Newsletter

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 17:48
Fall 2017 MCB Transcript

Meet our new faculty recruits, learn about our MCB faculty visiting 4th and 5th graders, read how MCB graduate students raised over $7,000 for Puerto Rico Hurricane relief, and much more!


Read it here now

King Receives Miller Research Professorship

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 14:47

HHMI Investigator and Professor of Genetics, Genomics and Development Nicole King is one of four UC Berkeley faculty who received a 2018-2019 Miller Professorship Award, allowing her a year to pursue new research directions.


Schaffer: CRISPR-Cas9 in ALS Research

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 14:08

Research led by David Schaffer, Professor of MCB and Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, has shown that CRISPR-Cas9 has the potential to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's disease.

The team used a modified adeno-associated virus to deliver the Cas9 gene to spinal cord motor neurons in mice that expressed an ALS-causing mutated human gene, which slowed the progression of the disease.


Happy Holidays and New Year from Molecular and Cell Biology!

Wed, 12/13/2017 - 12:52
Seasons Greetings

Enjoy this festive video, created using imagery from MCB Faculty Labs, and please keep an eye out for our MCB Fall 2017 Newsletter...


Portnoy Named Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors

Tue, 12/12/2017 - 13:27

Edward E. Penhoet Distinguished Chair in Global Public Health and Infectious Diseases and Professor of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Structural Biology Daniel Portnoy has been named a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.


Kramer Named 2017 Gund-Harrington Scholar

Mon, 11/27/2017 - 10:50

Professor of Neurobiology Richard Kramer is one of four innovative scientists and physicians to be named a 2017 Gund-Harrington Scholar for research having the potential to advance medical therapies for those suffering from retinal degenerative diseases.


Cox Maps Cell Networks

Sun, 11/26/2017 - 18:43

MCB Professor Jeffery Cox has collaborated with researchers at UCSF and UCSD to study and map the convoluted networks among proteins and genes in the body. The new research on how these networks facilitate interaction on the cellular level could lead to more precise treatments for a variety of diseases, from psychiatric disorders to cancer.

Read more…

Feller Elected as AAAS Fellow

Tue, 11/21/2017 - 08:21

MCB Professor Marla Feller has been elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for “advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.” She is one of six UC Berkeley faculty to be honored with this fellowship this year.


Breakthrough in Mechanism for Pathogen Defense

Mon, 11/20/2017 - 12:33

MCB graduate student Nicole Haloupek, and MCB alumna Jeannette Tenthorey, are co-lead authors on a groundbreaking new study published in Science last week. The new research sheds light on the mechanism in which the immune system detects and attacks invading bacteria, and builds upon our fundamental understanding of how the immune system functions.


Grad Student Armbien Sabillo Receives SACNAS Student Presentation Award

Wed, 11/15/2017 - 16:45

MCB graduate student Armbien Sabillo received a Student Presentation Award for his excellent work, titled “A Novel Role for the Neural Plate during X. Laevis Muscle Formation,” at the 2017 SACNAS Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah.


Bateup Receives Janett R. Trubatch Career Development Award

Wed, 11/15/2017 - 10:13

Assistant Professor of Neurobiology Helen Bateup received the Society for Neuroscience (SfN) Janett Rosenberg Trubatch Career Development Award for demonstrating creativity and originality in her research on neural circuit function and autism. 


Four MCB Faculty Named ASCB Fellows

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 14:34

Professors Abby Dernburg, Rebecca Heald, Eva Nogales and Jeremy Thorner were named ASCB Fellows by the American Society for Cell Biology. They are recognized for their lifetime achievements in advancing cell biology. They join many other prestigious faculty, both here at UC Berkeley (Professors David Drubin, Doug Koshland, and Randy Schekman) and elsewhere.


Brohawn is 2017 NYSCF Robertson Investigator

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 10:51

Assistant Professor Stephen Brohawn was named one of three 2017 New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF) Robertson Neuroscience Investigators from around the world, enabling him to pursue high-risk/high-reward research focusing on how the nervous system senses and responds to physical forces. 


Recognition at Science Film Festival

Thu, 10/26/2017 - 09:43

MCB Professor Nipam Patel's film "Squid: Coming to Life" was recognized at the 10th Annual Imagine Science Film Festival that was held in New York this month. His film won "runner up" in the Scientific Merit Award category. This award is given by a jury to the film that exemplifies science in storytelling and narrative filmmaking in a compelling, credible and inspiring manner.


Mapping the Brain

Tue, 10/24/2017 - 15:26

MCB Professor of Neurobiology John Ngai will lead the UC Berkeley team as one of six Principal Investigators collaborating on the Allen Institute for Brain Science's National Institutes of Health (NIH) BRAIN Initiative Cell Census grant. Their collective efforts will create an atlas of cell types in the mouse brain to serve as a basis for understanding how the human brain functions in health and disease.


MCB Annual Picnic 2017

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 15:22

Thanks to all faculty, staff, and researchers that attended our annual picnic this year!