The Joint Seminars in Molecular Biology is a cooperative effort by the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences, MCB T32 Training Program, and various departments in the School of Medicine. As part of this seminar series, MCB T32 Trainees have an opportunity to invite prominent national scientists to campus to give research talks. Trainees serve as hosts and make all of the arrangements for the speaker’s visit, host the speaker during their stay, formally introduce the speaker at the seminar, and participate in the group dinner with faculty.


February 11, 2020
Speaker: Dr. Gene Yeo, University of California, San Diego
Title: Understanding and Engineering RNA Binding Protein-RNA Networks
Host: Arvind Sunder ArulNambirajan

January 21, 2020
Speaker: Dr. Stirling Churchman, Harvard University
Title: The Dynamics of Gene Expression, from the Nucleus to Mitochondria
Host: Daisy Castillo Guzman

January 14, 2020
Speaker: Dr. Holger Knaut, NYU Langone Health
Title: How Cells Walk and Talk - Adjusting and Interpreting signals in the Extracellular Space
Host: Sydney Wyatt

November 5, 2019
Speaker: Dr. Heinrich Jasper, Genentech/Buck Institute of Aging/University of Southern California
Title: Age-related Stem Cell Dysfunction in Barrier Epithelia - Strategies of Intervention
Host: Bryan Teefy


May 7, 2019
Speaker: Dr. Mary Baylies,  Sloan Kettering Institute
Title: Regulation of Muscle Cell Size and Organization
Host: Linda Ma

February 26, 2019
Speaker: Dr. Anne Brunet, Stanford University
Title: Understanding and Modeling Aging
Host: Bryan Teefy

February 5, 2019
Speaker : Dr. Dan Fletcher, University of California, Berkeley
Title: Mind the Gap: Physical Segregation at Cell-Cell Contacts
Host: Dean Natwick

January 29, 2019
Speaker: Dr. Jeff Tabor, Rice University
Title: Bacterial Two-Component Systems as Sensors for Synthetic Biology
Host: Marcus Moreno

January 8, 2019
Speaker: Dr. Andres Leschziner, University of California, San Diego
Title: Structural and Functional Diversity in ATP-Dependent Nucleosome Remodelers
Host: Royce York

October 9, 2018
Speaker: Dr. Celmens Cabernard, University of Washington, Seattle
Title: The Cell Biology and Mechanisms of Assymmetric Cell Division
Host: Helen Lamb


April 19, 2018
Speaker: Rich Lewis, Stanford Universtiy
Title: The Molecular Choreography of Store Operated Calcium Channels
Host: Rebecka Sepela

February 15, 2018
Speaker: Magadalena Bezanilla, Darmouth College
Title: Cytoskeletal Dynamics during Polarized Growth
Host: Shane McInally

January 25, 2018
Speaker : Yi Zuo, University of California, Santa Cruz
Title: Experience-dependent Synapse Reorganization in the Living Brain
Host: Ayanna Wade

November 30, 2017
Speaker: Francesca Cole, MD Anderson Cancer Center, University of Texas
Title: Temporal, Spatial, and Genetic Differentiation of Meiotic Recombination in Mouse Spermatocytes
Host: Shannon Owens

October 5, 2017
Speaker: Dr. Kim Green, University of California, Irvine
Title: Exploring and Harnessing the Power of Microglia in the Diseased and Aged Brain
Host: Kaitryn Ronning


May 18, 2017
Speaker: Upinder Singh, Stanford University
Title: Regulation of Gene Expression in Entamoeba: Something Old and Something New
Host: Shea Feeney

April 20, 2017
Speaker: Geeta Narlikar, University of California, San Francisco
Title: ATP - Dependent and Independent Mechanisms of Regulating Chromatin State
Host: Commodore St. Germain

April 13, 2017
Speaker: Carrie Partch, University of California, Santa Cruz
Title: Dissecting the Molecular Basis of Circadian Timekeeping in Animals
Host: Adam Contreras

December 1, 2016
Speaker : Roy Parker, University of Colorado, Boulder
Title: RNP granules in health and disease
Host: Mattie O’Sullivan

October 20, 2016
Speaker: Diana Laird, University of California, San Francisco
Title: Passing on the Family Jewels: regulation and clonal dynamics of primordial germ cell development
Host: Matt McFaul

September 29, 2016
Speaker: Dyche Mullins, University of California, San Francisco
Title: Secrets of self-assembling molecular motors
Host: Briana Gregg


May 12, 2016
Regulation of synapse plasticity, learning and addiction by cadherin adhesion complexes– Shernaz Bamji, University of British Columbia
Host: Jason Lambert

May 5, 2016
Mechanisms of Hsp90 client activiation revealed by cryoEM structures of chaperone: client complexes – David Agard, UCSF
Host: Brian Cook
March 10, 2016
Programming the retina: it’s never too late to change your fate – Thomas Reh, University of WashingtonHost: Eric Miller

February 11, 2016
Mechanisms and programs of Pre-mRNA splicing in neurons – Douglas Black, University of California, Los Angeles
Host: Rochelle Coulson
January 28, 2016
Coordinating division with cell growth and differentiation – Jan Skotheim, Stanford University
Host: Taryn Gillies

January 21, 2016
Proteins with medically important properties: structural studies of several members of the β-trefoil family that function as serine protease inhibitors and/or as lectins – Alexander Wlodawer, National Cancer Institute
Host: Nick Hurlburt

January 14, 2016
Actin dynamics and the coordination of microtubule-actin interactions – Bruce Goode, Brandeis University
Host: Kelly Subramanian

November 19, 2015
Evolution of ion channels and neurons in early metazoans – Timothy Jegla, Penn State
Host: Michael Kirmiz

November 5, 2015
Biomarkers of breast cancer in breastmilk – Kathleen Arcaro, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Host: Maxine Umeh


May 21, 2015
Dissecting Mechanisms of Transcription Regulation in Cells & Across Genomes - John Lis, Cornell University
Host: John Smolka
May 14, 2015
From mitophagy and Parkinson’s disease to synapse elimination and ADHD - Morgan Sheng, Genentech, San Francisco
Host: Jason Lambert
March 12, 2015
Albert LaSpada, University of California, San Diego
Host: Ariadne Vlahakis
February 5, 2015
Molecular Origami: maintaining protein folding in health and disease - Judith Frydman, Stanford
Host: Kelly Subramanian
January 15, 2015
Cytoskeletal organization in the cytokinetic contractile ring - Amy Maddox, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Host: Daniel Cortes
November 13, 2014
Synthetic Photobiology in the Near-infrared - Mark Gomelsky, University of Wyoming
Host: Matt Blain-Hartung
November 6, 2014
Single Cell and Multicellular Wound Repair in Drosophila: Dealing with life’s little traumas - Susan Parkhurst, Fred Hutchison Cancer Center
Host: Courtney Bone


May 29, 2014
Yukiko Yamashita, University of Michigan
Host: Dena Leerberg

April 17, 2014
Plasticity and fidelity in C. Elegans development - Joel Rothman, University of California, Santa Barbara
Host: Courtney Bone

February 27, 2014
Translational Control of Cancer and Autism- Nahum Sonenberg, McGill University
Host: Kateryna Feoktistova

February 6, 2014
Integration of lipid metabolism and inflammation by LXRs - Peter Tontonoz, University of California, Los Angeles
Host: Robyn Jimenez

January 16, 2014
Diversity in the Origins of Proteostasis - William Balch, The Scripps Research Institute
Host: Andrew Murley

December 5, 2013
Molecular Mechanisms and Evolution of Calcineurin Signaling - Martha Cyert, Stanford University
Host: Ariadne Vlahakis

November 21, 2013
Genome regulation by long noncoding RNA’s - Howard Chang, Stanford University
Host: Yoong Wearn Lim

November 7, 2013
Chromosome Choreography during Meiosis - Abby Dernburg, University of California, Berkeley
Host: Kate Lawrence

October 17, 2013
Homeostatic Control of Neural Function: From Phenomenology to Molecular Design - Grae Davis, University of California, San Francisco
Host: Lyndsey Kirk