Dr Stefan Schulte-Merker


Westfaelische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany


Developmental Genetics, Evolution and Development of Skeletal Tissues.

The Institute for Cardiovascular Organogenesis and Regeneration focuses on the molecular and cellular dynamics of osteoblasts and osteoclasts with in skeletal system, with a particular emphasis on the spine. We are particularly interested in genetic approaches and in using zebrafish mutants to understand which genes are drivers of skeletogenesis and bone function.  Commonly we use transgenic lines to carry out in vivo imaging in wildtype and mutant embryos.


Stefan Schulte-Merker obtained his PhD from the University of Tübingen (Nüsslein-Volhard group, MPI), before carrying out post-doctoral work at the NIMR in London (UK) in the lab of Professor J. Smith.  He held a junior group leader position at the Max Planck Institute in Tübingen and served as a Director of the biotech company Artemis/Exelixis until 2004, before becoming a staff member at the Hubrecht Institute in Utrecht (The Netherlands) and an adjunct professor at Wageningen University.  Since 2014 he is director of the Institute for Cardiovascular Organogenesis and Regeneration in Münster, Germany.


The PhD project carried out by ESR14 will focus on the regenerative potential of the notochord in zebrafish embryos.  Studies earlier this year (Lopez-Baez et al., eLife 2018) have demonstrated that spine injuries can readily be regenerated within early larvae, and the molecular and cellular process during this regeneration process will be elucidated during the course of the project.

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