Hosted by the University of Alabama at Birmingham
May 16-18, 2022
The goal is to foster greater communication and interaction between pancreatic islet cell biology investigators within the Midwest region. The meeting will be composed of both senior and junior investigators, with exclusively students, postdoctoral fellows and newly independent investigators serving as speakers.
Your registration is not considered complete until fees ($50) are paid.
Faculty, staff, and trainees are invited to submit abstracts. Please adhere to the abstract guidelines.
The oral and poster abstract deadline is April 1, 2022
Meeting start: Monday, May 16 at 10AM CDT
Meeting end: Wednesday, May 18 at 3:25PM CDT
Christopher Wright, D. Phil.
Christopher Wright (Professor, Louise B. McGavock Endowed Chair, Dept. Cell & Developmental Biology) is Director of the Vanderbilt Program in Developmental Biology and Associate Director of the Vanderbilt Center for Stem Cell Biology. From 1985-1990, Wright worked as a postdoc with Dr. Eddy De Robertis on the just-discovered vertebrate homeobox genes. Amongst many publications on such genes, he published the first description of Pdx1 in frogs, a marker of posterior-foregut embryonic endoderm, including the prospective pancreas. Since joining Vanderbilt in 1990, he has been amongst the leaders in studies of the transcriptional regulation of pancreas organogenesis. Genetic studies in mouse determined that Pdx1 and Ptf1a are essential in the multipotent progenitors of the early pancreas anlagen, with later critical roles in insulin-producing beta cells (Pdx1) or enzyme-secreting acinar cells (Ptf1a). Other principal discoveries include pancreatic cell-fate switching by switching on or off certain transcription factors, and determining how these proteins control the developmental potential of stem and progenitor cells. One of Wright’s recent goals is to generate a high-resolution atlas of the entire cellular program of pancreas differentiation, using this information to understand if autoimmune type 1 diabetes might arise from improper organogenesis. Many graduate students and postdoctoral fellows received training in the Wright laboratory, including many with independent research programs in the USA or elsewhere.