MBL Senior Scientist Marko Horb, director of the National Xenopus Resource at MBL, a national stock center for two frog species used in biomedical research, has received a grant from the National Institutes of Health to make improvements in the Xenopus Mutant Resource (XMR) portion of the center.

The XMR was established in 2020 to create new mutant and transgenic lines using genome editing in the center’s two species, Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis, and to provide a destination for researchers to come and work on these various lines. An essential component of the XMR is the ability to grow and maintain these new mutant and transgenic lines, which requires that the recirculating aquatic systems that house the tadpoles and frogs function optimally. The new grant supports a project to make improvements to the recirculating aquatic systems in the XMR.

Research using Xenopus, because of its unique advantages as an experimental system, has revealed key insights in many domains of biomedical research including cell biology, development, neurobiology, physiology, and signal transduction. The XMR generates and characterizes different Xenopus mutants in key genes that are related to human diseases, which will help provide significant insights about the causes of these diseases.

The National Xenopus Resource is housed within the MBL’s Eugene Bell Center for Regenerative Biology and Tissue Engineering.