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Graduate student Louis Prahl received the NSF Graduate Fellowship in the spring of 2014. Keep up the good work, Louis!
An updated version of our microtubule tracking algorithm (TipTracker_v3) is now available for download here . The download package comes as a zip file that contains the tracking algorithm (two Matlab files) and a PDF support manual. This code update follows our recent chapter Quantitative analysis of microtubule self-assembly kinetics and tip structure in Methods in Enzymology, which contains additional information on code performance under various imaging conditions, and optimization procedures for potential user applications.
David Odde, Ph.D., IEM Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering Theme Co-Chair and Professor of Biomedical Engineering, was recently awarded a new R01 grant from the National Cancer Institute to develop an integrated modeling and microsystems approach to glioma invasion.
The $2.3M grant will involve researchers from Neurosurgery, the Masonic Cancer Center, the College of Science & Engineering and a collaboration with the Cleveland Clinic (Prof. Steve Rosenfeld, M.D., Ph.D.). A major goal will be to develop a "flight simulator" to simulate the mechanics of brain cancer cell migration in the brain, and use the simulator to identify possible therapeutic targets.
In this study, Prof. Odde and colleagues will be using a combination of advanced genetics, mouse models, and confocal light microscopy imaging to quantitatively measure glioma cell migration and force generation dynamics in live mouse brain slices. In parallel, they are developing advanced in vitro systems with controlled chemical and mechanical properties that more closely mimic normal and diseased brain tissue. Finally, these advanced experimental systems will be used to develop the "flight simulator" for the migrating cancer cells. This computer model will then be used to screen in silico for the most vulnerable nodes, and node combinations, in the mechanochemical network. Ultimately, they hope to find drug target combinations that strongly and selectively disable glioma cell migration, leading to new and more effective therapies.
Brian Castle's paper Brownian Dynamics of Subunit Addition-Loss Kinetics and Thermodynamics in Linear Polymer Assembly has been published in the current Biophysical Journal. In addition, Brian's image (shown at the left) was featured as the cover image of the current issue! Read more about the cover art here . Congratulations, Brian!
On the heels of his last publication, hot off the press is Ben's most recent paper Master Equation-Based Analysis of a Motor-Clutch Model for Cell Traction Force in CMBE. Way to go, Ben!
Becky Klank was awarded outstanding poster in the Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering Theme for her poster Biphasic Cell Migration and Progression of Malignant Gliomas. Well done, Becky!
Ben's paper Determinants of maximal force transmission in a motor-clutch model of cell traction in a compliant microenvironment was published in the Biophysical Journal in August 2013. Congratulations, Ben!
Former student Joseph Powers defended his Master's thesis entitled The Predicted Role of Stereospecificity in Crowding-Mediated Effects on Reversible Association in the summer of 2013. Joe then packed up his guitar and moved West to pursue a PhD in Bioengineering at the University of Washington. Lucky for the Huskies!
The Odde lab participated in Feed my Starving Children's food-packing event, which provides meals to malnourished children in over 70 countries around the world.
Former undergraduate researchers Alistair McIntyre and Ben Fuller graduated in the spring of 2013. Alistair is currently pursuing a MS in Bioengineering at the University of California, San Diego, and Ben is attending medical school at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Thanks for your hard work and good luck in your endeavors!
The University of Minnesota Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship will fund Becky's final year of graduate studies at the University of Minnesota. She will be completing her work on novel imaging and modeling approaches for understanding glioma tumor progression. Congratulations, Becky!
The Odde lab held its first annual Odde Lab Retreat at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum June 27, 2013. The lab used this time to discuss all current projects and brainstorm new ideas with collaborators from the University of Minnesota and the Cleveland Clinic.
Dave presented "If truth is beauty, can art be science?" with collaborator Carl Flink, Department of Theatre Arts & Dance at the TEDMED2013 Event at the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, DC, on April 17, 2013.
Dave and UMN Department of Theatre Arts and Dance Professor Carl Flink's collaboration is making news in the scientific community. On the heels of their recent publication Science+Dance=Bodystorming (Trends in Cell Biology, 2012), Bodystorming: Dance Grooves Show How Molecules Move, published in Science NOW in November, describes the background and progression of the collaboration, as well as reactions from other scientists invited to join the pair to use bodystorming to test their own scientific hypotheses. Photo: William Cameron
Former graduate student Dominique Seetapun's paper Estimating the GTP cap size in vivo was published in Current Biology in September, 2012.
High school research participant Lucas Kramer participated in the Central Minnesota Science Fair where he presented his poster "The Effects of Microtubule Dynamics on Glioma Cell Motility: Does the Cell Length Dependent Model for Microtubule Activity in Neurons Apply to Human Glioma cells?" from work completed in the Odde lab under the mentorship of Brian Castle during the summer of 2012. He was selected to advance to the Intel International Science Fair in Phoenix in May.
Emily presented her poster "Kinesin-5 promotes disassembly of long kinetochore microtubules" at the Microtubule Cytoskeleton in Development and Disease meeting March 18-20, 2013 .
Becky presented her poster entitled "CD44-Mediated Motility in the Progression of Malignant Gliomas" at the PhysCell 2012 Meeting "Pierre-Gille de Gennes days on Physics of cells: from soft to living matter" in Hyeres, France held September 2-8, 2012.
Dave returned to MBL as a Physiology Course Faculty member and brought Odde lab graduate students as his teaching assistants. In the two-week rotation, course students developed mathematical models of their home research topics and tested these models on Minneapolis-based dance company Black Label Movement.
In July, 2012, Ben gave a talk entitled "Optimality in a motor-clutch cell traction model" at the Signaling by Adhesion Receptors Gordon Research Seminar at Colby College in Waterville, ME. Well done, Ben!
With support from the NIH Neuorimaging Training Fellowhip, Becky will be using optical coherence tomography and two-photon imaging to study brain cancer motility. Congratulations, Becky!
With support from the UMN Graduate School IDF, Emily will collaborate with dancers, using "body-storming," to develop error correction models in mitosis during the 2012/2013 academic year. Congratulations, Emily!
The SPRBM and BMES are hosting the second inaugural Conference on Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering Jan. 3-7, 2012, at the Hilton Caribe Hotel and Resort in Puerto Rico.
Effective July 1, 2011, Dave joined the editorial board of the Biophysical Journal, the official journal of the Biophysical Society.
Dominique Seetapun, a recent graduate of the Odde lab, defended her thesis “Multiscale Microtubule Plus-End Dynamics in Neurons and Epithelial Cells” last May, 2011. She continues to work in the Odde lab as a post-doc. Congratulations, Dr. Seetapun!
Graduate student Ben Bangasser received the NSF Graduate Fellowship in the spring of 2011. Congratulations, Ben!