Internal Forces Directing Cell Migration are Revealed by Live-Cell Microscopy

Contact: 508-685-3525; dkenney@mbl.edu WOODS HOLE, Mass. — How do cells move in a certain direction in the body —go to a wound site and repair it, for example, or hunt down infectious bacteria and kill it? Two new studies from the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) show how cells respond to internal forces when they orient, […]

Growing Teeth and a Backbone: Studies Trace Early Origins of Skeletal Tissues

Contact: dkenney@mbl.edu; 508-289-7139 WOODS HOLE, Mass.—Two new studies on the evolutionary origin of teeth and of vertebra further illuminate the human connection to marine organisms that goes back millions of years. Both studies in the little skate (Leucoraja erinacea) are published this week by Andrew Gillis and Katharine Criswell of the University of Cambridge, U.K., […]

Not an Illusion: Clever Use of Mirrors Boosts Performance of Light-Sheet Microscope

Contact: 508-289-7139; dkenney@mbl.edu WOODS HOLE, Mass.—Using a simple “mirror trick” and not-so-simple computational analysis, scientists affiliated with the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) have considerably improved the speed, efficiency, and resolution of a light-sheet microscope, with broad applications for enhanced imaging of live cells and embryos. MBL Fellows Hari Shroff of the National Institute of Biomedical […]

Team Explores Salt Marsh Restoration to Offset Global Warming

By Stephanie M. McPherson Salt marshes have been flooded by inland freshwater along nearly a third of the U.S. Atlantic coast, due to diversions by dams, dikes, and other human constructs. This hurts more than the natural biodiversity of a saltwater system. As salt marshes freshen, they emit more and more methane—a powerful greenhouse gas. […]

Inspired by Octopus Skin, Engineers Develop a Programmable “Camouflaging” Material

Contact: Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory 508-685-3525 or 508-289-7139; dkenney@mbl.edu WOODS HOLE, Mass.—For the octopus and cuttlefish, instantaneously changing their skin color and pattern to disappear into the environment is just part of their camouflage prowess. These animals can also swiftly and reversibly morph their skin into a textured, 3D surface, giving the animal a […]

Mixed Organization of Gut Bacteria is Revealed by MBL Imaging Technology

Contact: Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory dkenney@mbl.edu; 508-289-7139 or 508-685-3525 WOODS HOLE, Mass.— Disruptions in the microbiome of the human gut are correlated with several diseases, including obesity and cancer. Yet little is known about the spatial organization of the nearly 1,000 bacterial species in the human gut, which can influence how the species interact […]

Carbon Feedback from Forest Soils will Accelerate Global Warming, 26-Year Study Projects

CONTACT: Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory 508-289-7139 or 508-685-3525; dkenney@mbl.edu WOODS HOLE, Mass.—After 26 years, the world’s longest-running experiment to discover how warming temperatures affect forest soils has revealed a surprising, cyclical response: Soil warming stimulates periods of abundant carbon release from the soil to the atmosphere alternating with periods of no detectable loss in […]

University of Chicago Pilots Undergraduate “September Courses” at MBL

“It’s intense—and enjoyable,” University of Chicago undergraduate Savy Johnson says of the new course that has landed her on the MBL’s Woods Hole campus for three weeks this September. Johnson is taking “Observing Proteins in Action: How to Design and Build Your Own Instruments,” one of three new courses at MBL offered to UChicago undergraduates […]

Microscope Invented at MBL Reveals Density of Chromosomal “Dark Matter”

Using a microscope invented at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), a collaborative team of biologists, instrument developers, and computational scientists has for the first time measured the density of a relatively inscrutable, highly condensed form of chromosomal material that appears in the cells of human beings and other eukaryotes. MBL scientists Michael Shribak (the microscope’s […]

Innovative UChicago, MBL Training Program in Quantitative Biology Garners Federal Award

By Rob Mitchum As biology transforms into a discipline driven by ever-expanding datasets and computational analysis, students need new forms of training to follow best practices and build a successful research career. With a new award from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the University of Chicago Biological Sciences Division (BSD) will test an innovative curriculum […]