WICB Early Career medal winner 2021
Francis Crick Institute - UK
Vivian Li obtained her PhD at the University of Hong Kong in 2008, studying human colonic development and tumourigenesis. She then received the Croucher Foundation Fellowship to pursue her post-doctoral training in Hans Clevers’ lab at the Hubrecht Institute (the Netherlands), where she studied Wnt regulatory mechanisms in the intestine. Vivian Li is now a group leader of the Stem Cell and Cancer Biology Laboratory at the Francis Crick Institute. Her lab investigates signalling regulation of intestinal homeostasis and cancer, with primary focus on Wnt signalling pathways. With the use of patient-derived organoids, Vivian is also developing innovative strategies to treat patients with intestinal failure.
She has been awarded the Future Leaders in Cancer Research Prize by CRUK in 2018 for her contribution to the molecular understanding of intestinal stem cells and cancer using organoid technology.
Hooke medal winner 2021 Centre for Mechanochemical Cell Biology,
University of Warwick - UK
Stephen Royle is a cell biologist at the Centre for Mechanochemical Cell Biology, Warwick Medical School. His research group investigate membrane trafficking and mitosis in human cells. Steve did his PhD in Cambridge, moving to the MRC-LMB as a postdoc where he discovered a role for clathrin in mitosis as well as working on synaptic vesicle endocytosis in neurons. He set up his lab in Liverpool in 2006 and moved to Warwick as a Senior Cancer Research UK Fellow in 2013 and where he is now a Professor. Some research highlights include 1) discovery of the "mesh" that stabilises microtubules during mitosis, 2) describing why endocytosis is inhibited during cell division, 3) identifying a new class of transport vesicle (intracellular nanovesicles). Steve's lab pursue a quantitative approach to cell biology and he has recently written a book "The Digital Cell" published by Cold Spring Harbor Lab Press on using computers in cell biological research. Steve was awarded the 2021 Hooke Medal for Cell Biology from the British Society for Cell Biology.
2020 PhD SBCF Prize
Curie Institute, Paris - France
Aleksandra Chikina is a biologist, trained at the Lomonosov Moscow State University. During this training, Aleksandra worked in Russian Cancer Research Institute (under supervision of Antonina Alexandrova) and in collaboration with University of Pennsylvania (under supervision of Tatyana Svitkina) described a fine structure of actin cytoskeleton in dynamic membrane blebs – protrusions formed by some cancer cells during amoeboid migration. After a master’s degree in Cell Biology and Physiology (Lomonosov Moscow State University) and Interdisciplinary approaches in Life Sciences (Universite Paris Diderot), Aleksandra performed a thesis co-supervised by the Danijela Matic Vignjevic and Ana-Maria Lennon-Dumenil at the Institut Curie, where she unraveled of mechanism of fluid absorption control in distal colon. After this experience, Aleksandra is currently a postdoctoral fellow in Institut Pasteur, working on tumor metabolism in a team of Phlippe Bousso.
2021 Young Researcher SBCF Prize
Pasteur Institute, Paris- France
Léo Valon is a physicist, trained at the Ecole Normale Supérieure ENS/ULM who, after a master’s degree in Biophysics, performed a thesis co-supervised by the late Maxime Dahan and Mathieu Coppey at the Institut Curie, where he established a system based on optogenetics to control cell organization. After this experience, Léo Valon did his first post-doctoral training with Xavier Trépat at IBEC in Barcelona where he studied the link between cell contractility and nuclear translocation of the transcription factor YAP dynamically using in vitro models. For his second post-doc, Léo wanted to apply his expertise in mechanics to quantitative cell biology in vivo. He thus joined the “Cell death and epithelial homeostasis” unit led by Romain Levayer at the Institut Pasteur. This team uses the Drosophila model system to understand how cell death influences tissue plasticity. There he discovered that when a cell of the epithelium dies, it pulls on the neighboring cells which activates a pro-survival regulatory pathway and prevents them from dying, thus protecting the tissue by keeping it impermeable. He is currently studying the role of cell compression as a factor that increases the probability of cell death, a process that may play an important role in the development of certain tumors.
Beginning of the online conference :
9:00 a.m UK Time, 10:00 a.m France Time