Illinois logo MCB The Department of Cellular and Developmental Biology
Supriya Prasanth


At the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, we study the mechanisms of how cells grow and divide, assemble and function to form multicellular organisms. Using multidisciplinary approaches, we investigate the fundamental biological questions relating to chromatin structure and dynamics; gene regulation; proteostatis; RNA biology; signal transduction in mammalian cell growth and differentiation; cytoskeletal organization and cell adhesion; mechanisms of cell determination, repair, regeneration and developmental patterning. Extensive collaboration with physicists, chemists and engineers have made it possible to investigate the internal workings of cells, and how cells respond to external cues. Our mission is to train and educate undergraduate and graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows in the areas of modern molecular and cellular biology, cancer biology, developmental biology and neuro-cognitive sciences.

Supriya Prasanth, Head

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CDB News

Rachel Smith-Bolton, a professor of cell and developmental biology at the University of Illinois, leads an exciting research program on tissue regeneration. Her recent work uses Drosophila as a model to explore the effects of different chromatin modifiers on initiating, spatially controlling, and ending regeneration in coordination with development. In a new publication in Genetics, she and postdoctoral researcher Yuan Tian uncover more mechanisms of regeneration control by showing the roles of two chromatin-remodeling complexes on regeneration in Drosophila through damaging the imaginal disc, the juvenile tissues that build the adult wing during metamorphosis. In particular, they demonstrate the effects of the SWI/SNF BAP and PBAP complexes on Drosophila wing imaginal disc regeneration.