Miranda Sun was one of the 2020 cool science images award winners for her fluorescent microscopy image visualizing vasculature and laminin during facial morphogenesis in the mouse.
A chemical commonly used in consumer and agricultural products to boost the effectiveness of insecticides has been linked to a rare birth defect in mice. The chemical, piperonyl butoxide or PBO for short, is widely used as a “synergist” in household and agricultural insecticides to make the toxic effects of the insecticide longer lasting and to reduce the amount of actual insecticide in a product. Now, a team led by Robert Lipinski, a professor of comparative biosciences in the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s School of Veterinary Medicine, reports that PBO interferes with the critical signaling pathway dubbed by scientists as sonic hedgehog, resulting in stunted forebrain development and signature facial abnormalities. The study was published in Environmental Health Perspectives and later selected as an NIEHS Extramural Paper of the Month.
Hannah Chung was one of the 2018 cool science image award winners for her confocal microscopy image showing blood vessels developing in the face of an 11-day-old mouse embryo. Facial development in mice and people is so similar, this is much what a human embryo’s facial blood vessels look like at 34 days.
A research team from the School of Veterinary Medicine (SVM) and the Research Animal Resource Center (RARC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has developed a reliable, non-intrusive method for early pregnancy detection that also significantly reduces the number of mice required to conduct studies of biological development.
Studying mice, the research team – led by CALS dairy science professor, Laura Hernandez – showed that serotonin – a hormone most often recognized for its role in depression but also shown to be linked to milk production in mammalian breasts – plays an important role in maintaining healthy calcium levels in the bloodstream.