Spring 2020 Bioengineering Seminars
Due to the current COVID-19 response, all in-person Bioengineering Seminars are cancelled through May 2020. Thank you for your patience and cooperation.
Noon – 1:00 PM
106 Stanley hall
March 18– CANCELLED
April 1– CANCELLED
Developing Tools to Spy on the Inner Workings of the Cell
From the 17th through the 19th century, beautifully artistic micrographs of living specimens were inextricably linked to biological discovery. However, for much of the 20th century, optical microscopy took a back seat to the powerful new fields of genetics and biochemistry. Starting in the 1980s, the tables started to turn again, thanks to the widespread availability of computers, lasers, sensitive detectors, and fluorescence labeling techniques. The result has been a Cambrian explosion of new technologies with the ability to understand the findings of genetics and biochemistry in the context of spatially complex and dynamic living systems at high spatiotemporal resolution. I will discuss the role of my lab in this developing story, and show how an increasingly detailed look at life has increasingly revealed an intricate and beautiful world.
Eric Betzig is a Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, the Eugene D. Commins Presidential Chair in Experimental Physics, and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the University of California, Berkeley. From 1988-1994 he ran a small lab at AT&T Bell Labs involved the development of and application of near-field optics – an early form of super resolution microscopy. He the left science to work in the machine tool industry, but returned ten years later when he and friend, Harald Hess, built the first super-resolution single molecule localization microscope in Harald’s living room. For this work, he is a co-recipient of the 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. From 2006 to the present he has led a group at the Janelia Research Campus of HHMI focused on the development of new imaging tools for biology, including lattice light sheet microscopy for the 4D dynamic imaging of living systems and adaptive optics to recover optimal imaging performance deep within aberrating tissues. He joined the Berkeley faculty in 2018.
April 15 – CANCELLED
“Cellular Stokesian Dynamics”: the colloidal hydrodynamics of biological cells”
April 22– CANCELLED
Quantitative chemical imaging of structure and function in living biological samples – from single cells to animals
Cell heterogeneity plays a critical role in many pathophysiological processes such as cancer development and neurodegeneration. However, phenotypic variations of individual cells in a complex organ are often intractable by traditional analytical techniques. The main obstacles are the limited amount of analyte in a single cell and the need for noninvasive in situ analysis in order to preserve cell function and microenvironmental information. My lab focuses on the development of label-free pump probe microscopy techniques that enables quantitative chemical and functional measurements at high spatial and temporal resolution from cultured cells to living animals. Specifically, we apply broadband and high sensitivity stimulated Raman scattering microscopy, an emerging chemical imaging tool, to study cell growth, cell metabolism, as well as disease processes. We also develop transient absorption microscopy to study a wide range of red blood cell associated functional processes such as neurovascular coupling in mouse brain. Together, we aim to build an integrated chemical imaging platform and couple it with advanced data analysis for comprehensive structural and functional imaging of living biological samples at single cell resolution.
April 29– CANCELLED
Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Cell and Developmental Biology, University of Michigan
Associate Director, Michigan Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care
Synthetic human embryo-like structure: A new paradigm for human embryology
Early human embryonic development remains mysterious due to drastic species divergences between humans and other mammalian models and limited accessibility to human embryo samples. Recent studies from my laboratory and others have shown that under suitable culture conditions human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) can undergo intricate morphogenetic events and self-organize to form patterned human embryo-like structures in vitro. These synthetic human embryonic-like tissues hold great promises for advancing human embryology and reproductive medicine. In this talk, I will describe a hPSC-based, synthetic 3D model of human post-implantation development that recapitulates key developmental landmarks successively, including pro-amniotic cavity formation, amniotic ectoderm-epiblast patterning, primordial germ cell specification, and development of the primitive streak with controlled anteroposterior polarity. We further show that the amniotic ectoderm, as the first lineage that segregates from the epiblast upon implantation of the human embryo, functions as a signaling center to trigger primitive streak development in the epiblast. Together, our research has developed a powerful synthetic embryological model and provided new understandings of previously inaccessible but critical embryogenic events in human development.
May 6– CANCELLED
Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, UC Berkeley