Dr. Derek van der Kooy
The van der Kooy lab works on various stem cell biology and developmental biology research projects, as well as genes important for learning and memory in worms and the neurobiology of motivation in rodents. The lab has helped to characterize the properties and molecular control of adult and embryonic brain neural stem cells, and in collaboration with the lab of Sam Weiss, first localized adult mammalian neural stem cells to the ventricular lining of the brain. The lab now works on stem cells in organisms from Drosophila to humans. Of note, Derek's lab produced the first report of stem cells in the adult mammalian eye, published in 2000 in Science. Derek's lab also has isolated a rare stem cell from the adult mouse and human pancreas that can show extensive proliferation under completely defined conditions in vitro. Derek's lab continues to investigate the nature of various stem cells, and in particular, the lineage of neural stem cells from pluripotent embryonic stem cells, with particular relevance to the origin of the earliest neural stem cell in the developing embryo.
Areas of Focus
Neural Development & Stem Cell Biology, Neurobiology of Motivation , Learning and Memory Genes