Awardees' Articles

HFSP Long-Term Fellow Iain Mathieson and colleagues

Thursday 26th November 2015

Ancient DNA makes it possible to observe natural selection directly by looking for parts of the genome that changed rapidly over time. By sequencing the genomes of ancient Europeans who lived during the past eight thousand years, we find selection on genes associated with diet, pigmentation and immunity, likely driven by the transition to an agricultural lifestyle in new environments at this time.


HFSP Cross-Disciplinary Fellow Kurt Schmoller and HFSP Long-Term Fellow Mardo Kõivomägi and colleagues

Tuesday 24th November 2015

Many cells, including the unicellular organism budding yeast, control their own size by linking growth and division. Now, a molecular mechanism that allows budding yeast to measure and adjust its own size has been identified.


HFSP Young Investigator Grant holder Rosalind Allen and colleagues

Monday 23rd November 2015

We have tracked how bacteria compete for space when they grow on a surface, using a microscope and computer simulations. The "winners" of this ecological competition depend on both the speed at which bacteria colonize the space around them and the interactions between competing populations when they collide.


HFSP Program Grant holder David Lentink and colleagues

Friday 20th November 2015

HFSP Program Grant awardee David Lentink and his colleagues have developed a novel suspension system for in-flight cameras using whooper swan flight as a cue for their latest tech tool. The development of this new tool is an essential element in an HFSP funded collaboration with colleagues in Australia and Canada to understand the exquisite flight control mechanisms of birds because they exhibit complex and diverse flight, and naturally fly over regions typically not easily accessible to controlled...


HFSP Long-Term Fellow Caspar Schwiedrzik and HFSP Program Grant holder Winrich Freiwald and colleagues

Thursday 19th November 2015

Studying the connectivity of face processing areas in monkeys reveals the routes by which information about faces is exchanged with other brain areas supporting socially, emotionally, and cognitively relevant functions, and uncovers a set of brain areas stunningly similar to the network implementing high-level social cognition in humans.


HFSP Career Development Award holder Pablo Manavella and colleagues

Tuesday 17th November 2015

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are key regulators of plant development. These small molecules are produced by a dynamic but highly coordinated process. The processing of miRNA is carried out by a group of well-characterized proteins. Despite the handful of cofactors regulating this process that have been identified in recent years, it is unclear how the plant fine-tunes the production of miRNA in different tissues. Now, RCF3 was identified as a regulator of the miRNA processing machinery acting preferentially...


HFSP Long-Term Fellow Yonatan Stelzer and colleagues

Monday 16th November 2015

DNA methylation is considered a key epigenetic modification that shapes and maintains cellular identity. In recent years, advancements in sequencing technologies enabled the generation of detailed single-base resolution maps of DNA methylation in multiple cell types. However, current methods only provide a static "snapshot" of the methylation levels thus precluding the study of real-time epigenetic changes and limiting prospective mechanistic experiments. Here, we established a novel reporter...


HFSP Program Grant holder Uri Alon and colleagues

Friday 13th November 2015

Newly developed technologies enable the expression of many genes in single cells to be measured, thus posing the challenge of analyzing and understanding this high-dimensional data. A recent theory on multi-objective task optimization suggests that this data should be arranged in simple geometrical shapes. Applying this theory allows the tasks and the trade-offs that the tissue faces to be revealed.


HFSP Young Investigator Grant holders Kristian Franze, Malte Gather and Giuliano Scarcelli and colleagues

Tuesday 10th November 2015

Although microglial cells, which represent the first line of immune defense in the central nervous system, constantly mechanically interact with their environment, our current understanding of microglia mechanics is very limited. Here, we quantified forces exerted by healthy and activated microglial cells, investigated how mechanical signals impact their migration patterns, developed a theoretical framework to predict their mechanical behavior, and found that immune activation decreases microglial...


HFSP Young Investigator Grant holder Harald Janovjak and colleagues

Tuesday 3rd November 2015

Many biological questions are answered by systematically 'screening' experimental conditions, such as different genetic make-ups of organisms, environmental parameters or drug candidates. Light is at the heart of a new method that radically reduces complexity in and simplifies design of biological high-throughput screens.