Aaron N. Johnson, PhD
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Washington University in St. Louis (WU)
An essential research priority in the field of developmental and regenerative biology is to understand how morphogens regulate cell form and function during tissue morphogenesis. Although morphogens have been studied for decades, the mechanisms by which extracellular signals govern cell shape changes during organogenesis remain incompletely understood. In addition, a number of congenital diseases are thought to arise from defects in organ development. To close this knowledge gap, we are using skeletal muscle development as a model to characterize the molecules and mechanisms that govern post-mitotic tissue morphogenesis.