Training Grants

DBTP Program News

News and Updates

The DBTP was renewed for five more years in April 2019 by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). During the past five years, the DBTP supported 13 trainees including 8 women and 4 trainees from groups underrepresented in science. The thirteen appointed trainees were affiliated with four of the six University of Chicago graduate programs (CMB, DRSB, GGSB, EVBIO, INTEGBIO, NEURO)  from which the DBTP recruits students. Each of these programs has its own curricular requirements that are complemented by the DBTP, which brings together students with interests in developmental biology to provide a broader interdisciplinary community where students can learn from one another as well as from postdoctoral trainees, staff and faculty who share common interests. One of the primary training activities of the DBTP is a biweekly journal club/data in progress series. This event regularly attracts 30-40 participants from the laboratories of DBTP trainers, and provides an excellent opportunity for trainees to share ideas, receive feedback and improve their communication skills. The DBTP also co-supports a regular monthly seminar series, with speakers selected, hosted and introduced by the students. Further, in 2016 the DBTP sponsored a mini-symposium showcasing trainee speakers and including an external speaker from our advisory board, and in 2017 the DBTP co-hosted a symposium on “Morphogenesis” featuring six outstanding external speakers. The seminars and symposia provide invaluable networking opportunities for the trainees, while broadening their scientific training. The DBTP additionally provided funds to enable trainees to attend the annual Molecular Biosciences retreat, as well as regional and national conferences. These opportunities allowed students to present their research findings, further developing their communication skills and expanding their networks, while receiving feedback on their research from a broader community.

Finally, the DBTP has provided a valuable “hub” at the University of Chicago, which promotes interactions across multiple basic and clinical departments housing faculty—and their research teams—focused on developmental biology. This has, in turn, promoted interdisciplinary research and ensured a vibrant exchange of ideas.

  • DBTP co-director, Victoria Prince was named the President-Elect of the Society for Developmental Biology in July 2021.
  • DBTP Alumnus Ariel Pani (PhD 2013) was awarded an NIH NIGMS R35 to research the cell-biological functions of developmental cell signaling in July 2021.
  • DBTP Alumnus Ariel Pani (PhD 2013) and Kacy Gordon (PhD 2014) have been appointed as Assistant Professors of Biology at the University of Virginia and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill respectively.
  • DBTP Alumna Kacy Gordon (PhD 2014) was awarded an NIH NIGMS R35 to research germ stem cell development in August 2022.
  • DBTP Alumna Lindsey Fong Mao (PhD 2019) has been appointed as an Assistant Professor at Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois.
  • DBTP Trainee Sonja Lazarevic (2016-18) was awarded an NIH NRSA HL F31 in April 2019.
  • DBTP Trainee Manuel Rocha (2016-18) was awarded an NIH NRSA HD F31 in October 2018.
  • DBTP Alumnus Adam Isabella, PhD, was awarded an American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellowship in May 2018 and an NIH NRSA HD F32 award in January 2019, to support his postdoctoral research at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle WA.
  • DBTP Alumna Grace Shulz has been named a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow (NSF GRFP) 
  • DBTP Alumnus Jake Henderson was awarded an NIH NRSA NS F31 in April 2022.
  • DBTP Alumnus Adam Isabella was appointed an Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota
  • DBTP Alumna Caroline Albertin was appointed an Assistant Professor (Assistant Scientist) at the Marine Biological Laboratory