Category Cool Paper


Elation, excitement, relief, pride. Work that was begun more than 5 years ago has finally seen the light of day! We still have many questions, but our current insights into how two extrinsic signals – Gdf6a and the retinoic acid (RA) – influence the transition from proliferation to differentiation in the vertebrate eye is now published in Development. […]

Urban Planning in the Eye

The retina may seem like a unified, homogenous structure, but really it’s more like a city, with different building types and an organized layout. We would scoff at a city with two libraries next to each other, or a tiny cottage sandwiched between skyscrapers. The retina avoids its own versions of these problems by creating […]

Rod vs. Cone Regeneration in the Teleost Retina

By Ingrid Tower It’s 4am and you’ve gotta pee. You sit up on your bed and and search for the outlet to insert your lamp plug, because you still haven’t fixed the on/off switch. Can’t find it. Great. You must now fumble through the dark to find your way to your oh-so-far-off door.  Relax. Take […]

A Tale of Two Mutants

By Emily Crotteau What if your eyes could regenerate over time, saving you from the declining vision many people face as they age? Scientists are hoping to find answers to this question by studying
fish, whose eyes possess regenerative capacity throughout their lives. Fish and humans are distantly related, but if fish evolved their eye-regenerating abilities […]

Eat to grow…

By Karen Dewey Everyone must eat to live; we all know this from day one. We get all our energy from food, but what else does a good diet do for us? Our bodies store energy in fat deposits that have effects on a cellular level, effects so small that we never really notice them. […]

Eye’ve Made A Change

Blimp1 Tells Retinal Cells What They’ll Become By Anna Fimmel Every little kid knows what they want to be when they grow up.  Fireman, ballerina, Batman, truck-driver,….  Unlike little kids, immature retinal cells  need someone to tell them what they’re going to be.  For example, different homeodomain transcription factors —proteins that bind to specific bits […]

Science Savvy November 2nd 2012

If the 18th century English poet and clergyman John Newton were alive today, he would likely be shocked to hear his words “I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see”, associated with a column about the advances of science. Whereas he was using the words of Amazing Grace to […]