Microenvironment preprint on bioRxiv

The manuscript for Lennart’s postdoc project “Transcription establishes microenvironments that organize euchromatin” is now up on bioRxiv.

We investigated how the process of accessing the information contained in DNA leads to its three-dimensional organization. By a combination of STED super-resolution imaging (thank you Alf Honigmann and lab!), Fab-based live imaging (thank you Yuko, and Hiroshi Kimura’s lab!), and physical modeling (thanks Vasily Zaburdaev and lab, and Frank Jülicher!), we concluded that the process is similar to the organization in a microemulsion. With the exception that ours contains not a conventional, but a catalytically active amphiphile.

Oh, and the twitter action’s here…

Welcome Predocs 2017!

In the month of November, Ksenia and 29 other PhD students from the International Max Planck Research School for Cell, Developmental and Systems Biology (IMPRS-CellDevoSys) took part in their month-long Predoc course. Each week, students attended lectures and practicals in the field of Chemistry, Biophysics, Biology, and Computational Biology with the research groups at CBG, CSBD, and PKS. This was an opportunity for students to learn about the ongoing research and techniques used by each group. Many students also took part in a scientific writing course.

While enriching their scientific knowledge, students also had to exercise their creative minds. At the end, all the predocs put together a very entertaining Special Friday Seminar for the CBG-CSBD community – “Lessons Learned: Special Report on the 2017 Predoc Course”.

New friendships were formed and curious minds were nourished, as the students familiarized with their new home for the next 3-4 years. We hope they will form a supportive group for one another throughout their PhD.

  

Be our guest: Haruka Oda

Yet another exciting exchange for both the Vastenhouw and Kimura lab!

It was our pleasure to host Haruka Oda, a postdoctoral fellow from the lab of Dr. Hiroshi Kimura (Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan). During her short visit, Haruka monitored the early embryo stages of zebrafish and collected them for western blot analyses on her favourite proteins. A very pleasant week both in and outside the lab, including feasting on St. Martin’s goose, exploring Dresden, and catching a glimpse of the city’s Christmas markets.

    

 

 

The One with the Goose

The legend goes that St. Martin once gave a homeless person half his coat, and saved them from the cold. With this good deed, the Church officials wanted to honour St. Martin by ordaining him as the next bishop. Being a modest man, he hid in a goose pen to avoid the Church officials. Well, the cackling of the geese betrayed him and the goose became the symbol of St. Martin’s day.

The lab celebrated the German tradition of Martinsgans (St. Martin’s goose) over a festive meal: roasted goose, Knudeln (German dumplings), Wurst (sausage), Flammkuchen (flame cake, German flatbread), and Kartoffeltasche (potato bag).

We also welcomed our guest for the week, Dr. Haruka Oda, a postdoctoral fellow from the lab of Dr. Hiroshi Kimura at Tokyo Institute of Technology.

Máté: Submit thesis ✓

Máté reached an important milestone of his PhD studies – thesis submission! High-Five Máté for crunching your way through thesis writing and making it through!

Next up: thesis defense.

PhD defense: Dr. Shai Joseph

 

 

2017.10.30: Congratulations Shai on successfully defending his PhD!

Many thanks to our artistically talented Sabrina for making Shai’s fantastic Doktorhut,

which features past and current lab members partying at “Shai’s Histone Cocktail Bar” atop the hat.

All the best to Shai in his new career path!

 

 

Photo credit (top featured image): IMPRS PhD program

Lennart presents at CBG’s Friday Seminar

20.10.2017: With ~3 years of research experience at CBG up his sleeve, it was now Lennart’s time to take centre stage and present his research to the CBG community at the internal Friday Seminar series. The showcase was followed by social hour with fellow scientists. We capped our Friday off with a belated birthday celebration over delicious burgers.

 

Lab Retreat 2017

Tis that time of the year again! This year’s Vastenhouw Lab retreat took place in Technische Universität (TU) Dresden’s Computer Science green building. Together with Vasily Zaburdaev (MPI-PKS) and Thomas Quail (Jan Brugues lab, MPI-CBG), we had a matinee of stimulating and fruitful discussions.

In the evening, we all gathered around a kitchen and bar – where we got to cook our dinner and shake our cocktails (with some help from the professionals). A festive night for the Vastenhouw Lab! There were also hellos and goodbyes. We welcomed new lab members and said farewell to the veterans, as they transition to the next chapter of their career.

        

 

The Vastenhouw Lab goes to Laboratory Animal Science Training

Our lab took part in a one week theory and practical training on “Using Experimental Animals in Research”.
During the course we also got exposed to different kinds of fish: besides our favorite zebrafish, we even performed small experiments with medaka and Tilapia! As is evident from the group picture, we had a lot of fun and would like to thank all the organizers.