- 1 Lab Attendance
- 2 Individual Assessments
- 3 References
Lab 1: --Z3289738 11:49, 25 July 2012 (EST)
Lab 2: --Z3289738 10:12, 1 August 2012 (EST)
Lab 3: --Z3289738 10:08, 8 August 2012 (EST)
Lab 4: --Z3289738 10:20, 15 August 2012 (EST)
Lab 5: --Z3289738 10:13, 22 August 2012 (EST)
Lab 6: --Z3289738 10:16, 29 August 2012 (EST)
Lab 7: --Z3289738 10:27, 12 September 2012 (EST)
Lab 8: --Z3289738 10:30, 19 September 2012 (EST)
Lab 9: --Z3289738 10:08, 26 September 2012 (EST)
Lab 10: --Z3289738 11:18, 3 October 2012 (EST)
Lab 12: --Z3289738 10:36, 17 October 2012 (EST)
Full lab attendance logged. --Mark Hill 07:33, 18 October 2012 (EST)
Lab 1 Assessment
Q1. Identify the origin of In Vitro Fertilization and the 2010 nobel prize winner associated with this technique and add a correctly formatted link to the Nobel page.
The idea of In Vitro Fertilization began to formulate in the 1890s, when Walter Heape reported the first known case of embryo transplantation in rabbits. In 1953 John Rock extracted the first intact human fertilized egg. The first successful attempt at IVF was in 1978 by Steptoe and Edward.
Robert G. Edwards, the physiologist who developed the In Vitro Fertilization treatment, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2010. Nobel Prize Page
Q2. Identify and add a PubMed reference link to a recent paper on fertilization and describe its key findings (1-2 paragraphs).
This article looks into the process of embryo implantation. It demonstrates how the activation of the epithelial Na(+) channel triggers prostoglandin E(2) release,phosphorylation of teh transcription factor CREB and upregulation of cyclooxygenase 2, the enzyme required for prostaglandin production and implantation. They detected maximum Epithelial Na(+) channel activation at the time of implantation in mice, and that blocking or knocking down this channel in mice resulted in failure to implant. These results indicate the importance of the Epithelial Na(+) Channel in the process of implantation, and the consequences of defects such as miscarriage and low success rates in IVF.
--Mark Hill 17:46, 10 September 2012 (EST) Excellent answers to both questions 10/10.
Lab 2 Assessment
Q1. Upload an image from a journal source relating to fertilization or the first 2 weeks of development as demonstrated in the practical class. Including in the image “Summary” window: An image name as a section heading, Any further description of what the image shows, A subsection labeled “Reference” and under this the original image source, appropriate reference and all copyright information and finally a template indicating that this is a student image.
Q2. Identify a protein associated with the implantation process, including a brief description of the protein's role (1-2 paragraphs)
Trophinin is an membrane adhesive protein expressed on human trophoblastic cells and on uterine endometrium epithelial cells. The protein mediates apical cell adhesion and activate trophectoderm cells for implantation via proliferation and invasion. 
--Mark Hill Image uploaded correctly with all required information and a reasonably good answer second question. The 2 lines you have provided is not sufficient explanation. By the way, you do not need to include your student number in the file name and you have left a space at the beginning of Copyright information affecting formatting. 8/10.
Lab 3 Assessment
Q1. Identify the difference between "gestational age" and "post-fertilisation age" and explain why clinically "gestational age" is used in describing human development.
"Gestational age" is measured from the first day of the woman's last menstrual cycle, whereas "post-fertilisation age" measures the time passed since fertilization of the oocyte. Gestational age is more clinically relevant as it is easier to determine the date of the woman's last menstrual cycle than it is to determine the date of fertilization. Furthermore, gestational age can also be determined before and after birth by measuring the size of the head, thigh bone and abdomen (before birth), and the size of the head and weight after birth. Gestational age is therefore used to determine the infant's medical history and medical plan.
Q2. Identify using histological descriptions at least 3 different types of tissues formed from somites.
Somites differentiate to form: (1) the axial skeleton (vertebral body & inter-vertebral disk), (2) dermis and (3) skeletal muscle.
- Cells in the ventromedial half of each somite differentiate into the sclerotome via Sonic hedgehog signalling mechanisms. The Pax 1 transcription factor then converts the sclerotome into chondrocytes (cartilage), which is essential for the functioning of the vertebral column.
- Cells in the dorsolateral portion of the somites differentiate to form the dermomyotone. This is then divided into:
- Dorsal dermatome which later contributes to the formation of the dermis in response to neutropin 3 factors.
- Wnt1 and Wnt3 factors contribute to the formation of the ventral myotome, which is further split into the epaxial myotome (gives rise to erector spinae muscles) and the hypaxial myotome (gives rise to the muscles of the trunk and limbs).
--Mark Hill Both questions answered here well. 10/10
Lab 4 Assessment
Q1. Identify the 2 invasive prenatal diagnostic techniques related to the placenta and 2 abnormalities that can be identified with these techniques.
- Chorionic villus sampling (CVS)is an invasive prenatal diagnostic technique that is used to detect genetic abnormalities such as Down syndrome or cystic fibrosis. During the procedure a sample of the placenta is removed via a needle through the abdomen and then examined in a laboratory. It is commonly performed between 10 and 12 weeks of pregnancy/
- Amniocentesis procedures involve collecting samples of amniotic fluid via a needle through the abdomen to check for genetic abnormalities such as Down syndrome, cystic fibrosis or spina bifida.
Q2. Identify a paper that uses cord stem cells therapeutically and write a brief (2-3 paragraph) description of the paper's findings.
F. Ramirez, D. Steenblock, A. Payne and L. Darnall (2006) Umbilical Cord Stem Cell Therapy for Cerebral Palsy. MED HYPOTHESES RES 3: 679-686 | Umbilical Cord Stem Cell Therapy for Cerebral Palsy
This article describes a six month study to evaluate the effectiveness of umbilical cord stem cells in treatment for various brain injuries and disorders, in particular Cerebral Palsy. The study began in 2004, whereby 8 children between the ages of 3-12 who had been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy underwent transplants with 1.5 million umbilical cord stem cells. The study reported eight of of eight children showed some improvement in mobility and/or cognitive function. Furthermore, one aphasic child started talking again and another who had been blind since birth was able to see after post-treatment.
The results from this preliminary observational pilot study suggests that umbilical cord stem cells may be a safe and promising treatment for children with cerebral palsy.
Mark Hill - You have answered both questions well. I would have liked you to use the correct PubMed citation method for question 2. 9/10
a) Class exercises
1. Maturation Hypertrophy - In your groups, design a method to estimate the degree of hypertrophy that occurs during the transition from birth to adulthood. Use the rulers to make rough measurements on the screen and then estimate the degree of hypertrophy as a mean increase in fibre size. Discuss the result as a class. (ie Try estimate the degree of hypertrophy from child to adult cells)
Method: Measured area of the child and adult cells, found an average for each and then worked out the percentage increase.
Answer: 7x increase in area size.
2. The role of satellite cells in muscle hypertrophy - class discussion of data presented in a recent paper - McCarthy et al. 2011. (ie How to we achieve hypertrophy? How do we get proteins into the cells? Degeneration of the myonucleus - Can activate the satellite cells as if the cell is undergoing repair; the nuclei within the cells becomes more active, produces more RNA and the cells get bigger.)
3. Fibre type shift - Discuss an experiment on fiber type shift that has been induced by chronic low frequency stimulation - Martins et al. 2006
Q1. (a) Provide a one sentence definition of a muscle satellite cell.
Satellite cells are quiescent stem cells present in adult muscle tissue between the basal lamina of a muscle fiber and are responsible for postnatal hypertrophy and regeneration. 
Q1. (b) In one paragraph, briefly discuss two examples of when satellite cells are activated?
These cells are normally quiescent in adult muscle, by are activated in response to injury and muscle disease. When activated, the cells begin to proliferate and after aligning they fuse to allow for repair and/or regenration of muscle fibres. Satellite cells assist in the regeneration of muscle tissues in response to muscle injury by either forming multinucleated myotubes or additional quiescent satellite cells. . Furthermore, studies have provided evidence of an increased level of satellite cells in muscular diseases such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). 
Q2. In one brief paragraph, describe what happens to skeletal muscle fibre type and size when the innervating motor nerve sustains long term damage such as in spinal cord injury?
Spinal cord injuries which lead to long term damage to the innervating motor nerve would result in muscle partial or complete paralysis of muscles, leading to muscle atrophy.  This results in a significant decrease in cross-sectional area of the immobilized muscle do to lack of use.  Another consequence of the decreased muscle mass is an increased level of connective tissues and fat in order to assist the transfer of forces to the tendons. Furthermore, the composition of muscle fibre types are transformed from a mix of type I and type II fibres to predominantly type II (fast twitch) muscle fibres.  This is a result of the muscle no longer being used for endurance-type excersises.
Mark Hill - all answered here correctly and in good detail. 10/10
Lab 8 - Peer Reviews
Group Assessment Criteria:
- The key points relating to the topic that your group was allocated are clearly described The introduction explains why the eye is important and lists the anatomical structures, however there is no indication that this project page is about the development of the eye!
- The choice of content, headings and sub-headings, diagrams, tables, graphs show a good understanding of the topic area. The project predominantly focuses on the development of the eye, and goes into detail the development of each individual structure. There are also a lot of student-drawn images and diagrams of developmental stages which shows a good understanding of the topic area.
- Content is correctly cited and referenced. There is no copyright notices for any of the images and they all lack explanations.
- The wiki has an element of teaching at a peer level using the student’s own innovative diagrams, tables or figures and/or using interesting examples or explanations. The text is easy to understand and there are many student-drawn diagrams, which makes the content more interesting to read.
- Evidence of significant research relating to basic and applied sciences that goes beyond the formal teaching activities. I would say the information provided satisfies the aims of the project, however the research does not go ‘beyond the formal teaching activities’ as it lacks additional information such as abnormalities, normal functioning etc.
- Relates the topics and content of the Wiki entry to learning aims of embryology. The contents and topics are strongly related to the learning aims of embryology.
- The content of the wiki should demonstrate to the reader that your group has researched adequately on this topic and covered the key areas necessary to inform your peers in their learning. All the content provided is well researched and relevant to the aims of the project. They key areas are well described.
- I feel that this page would benefit from a timeline or ‘weekly development’ table that briefly describes what structures are developed in each week. This would provide a good summary of the content as well as allow reader to be able to understand how the development of each structure relates to each other.
- Good referencing of images throughout project page – relating images to content
- Less paragraphs, more tables, bullet points, emphasize certain important points
- History & research sections look incomplete.
Group Assessment Criteria:
- The key points relating to the topic that your group was allocated are clearly described. The introduction outlines the importance of the somatosensory system and provides a good summary of the developmental stages. More emphasis could be made on the key points of the project page.
- The choice of content, headings and sub-headings, diagrams, tables, graphs show a good understanding of the topic area. The content shows an understanding of the topic area, however the layout makes the text difficult to follow. There is not a clear connection between the ‘Central Somatosensory Differentiation’ and the somatosensory system. There is a lack of diagrams, tables and graphs to explain the written content.
- Content is correctly cited and referenced. Some sections are correctly referenced whilst others are completely lacking. This area needs working on.
- The wiki has an element of teaching at a peer level using the student’s own innovative diagrams, tables or figures and/or using interesting examples or explanations. The information is broken down well by headings and subheadings, however there is a lack of relating images to compliment the information. The one student drawn image is very useful.
- Evidence of significant research relating to basic and applied sciences that goes beyond the formal teaching activities. The information provided is well researched and satisfies the aims of the project in terms of developmental stages, however in order to go ‘beyond the formal teaching activities’ it needs to include sections such as abnormal development and more on the history, current and future research.
- Relates the topics and content of the Wiki entry to learning aims of embryology. The topics and content relate to the learning aims of embryology by describing the developmental stages if the somatosensory cortex.
- The content of the wiki should demonstrate to the reader that your group has researched adequately on this topic and covered the key areas necessary to inform your peers in their learning. There has been a fair amount of research into the topic, however a bulk of the information is focused on descriptions of each of the senses. More emphasis should be placed on the development of each of these sense as that is the key topic area.
- The Introduction and Central Somatosensory Differentiation sections were well written and the accompanying diagram was very useful.
- The layout of the page could be improved with the use of tables and diagrams to reduce/replace the amount of text
- The project seems largely incomplete; more research needs to go into the History and research sections and there is a lack of images
- Introduction: The information is very interesting and provides a good overview of the olfactory system. The only improvement that could be made is clearly stating what content is going to be covered on this project page. Also, “The olfactory system are often divide into a peripheral mechanism”
- History of Discovery: This sections presents a good summary of each research paper, detailing a background of the researchers and the importance of each discovery. Well done!
- Time line of developmental process: This section shows a good depth of research and provides detailed descriptions of each stage of development. However, the information provided is quite complicated and would not be easily understood by peers. This could be overcome by the use of labeled diagrams or hand drawn images, which I can see is yet to come. Overall this is a well done section, the colors draw the readers attention and I like the use of bolded text to highlight important information.
- Anatomy of the Olfactory System & Normal Function: This provides a good amount of information seeing as the focus of the page is about olfactory development, not the function & final structure. The only improvement could be providing an explanation in the figure provided.
- Congenital Abnormalities: This section is well organized and includes all relevant content. Very interesting to read.
- Current Research: A well researched section and coverage of content. Each paper is summarized and the importance of each discovery is made clear. It would be nice to include a direct link to each article.
- Introduction: The introduction is quite well written and very detailed. Rather than going straight into details of development, perhaps first make it clear from the exactly what this project page is about and what content you will be covering. There are also some grammatical errors, such as “treatments or cures ‘’’maybe’’’ developed in the future and these conditions can be better managed.” Maybe = may be
- Normal eye development: This section shows a good depth of research, is strongly related to the aims of the embryology course and shows a good depth of research. Improvements could be made by the use of bullet points, tables or bold text to highlight key points. Also, labeled images or hand-drawn diagrams would go well to compliment the text.
- Abnormal Development: There is a good depth of research and it is well written. The use of headings, figures and italics makes it easy to follow the flow of information. Improvements could be made by providing more information about the diseases, for example, what is Peters' anomaly (Corneal Opacity) and aniridia (lack of Iris)? Is it curable? What are methods of detection? How will it effect the future baby?
- Ocular Manifestations: This section seems incomplete; or maybe its just poorly organized? What are the two separate sections? Is this related to the sections that follow?
- Research Time line: This is a good time line, however only one source has been used. This provides a good summary of significant discoveries, but it has not been explained why these discoveries were important or how it is relevant to the development of the eye.
- New Research Development: This section is well researched, however the poor structuring and layout of the information makes it difficult to read and follow. For example there are many headings and subheadings however it is unclear what sections of information are grouped together. The images draw the readers attention and there seems to be a good depth of research into the topic.
- Group Assessment Criteria: The key points relating to the topic that your group was allocated are clearly described in the introduction. The choice of content and depth of research shows a good understanding of the topic area, however the information could be better organized by the use of tables, bullet points and bolded text to highlight key points. The content is correctly cited and referenced. Most sections are well paraphrased for teaching at a peer level, however the use of hand-drawn diagrams and/or labeled images could enhance the information in the text. The information covered is strongly related the the learning aims of embryology.
Group Assessment Criteria:
- The key points relating to the topic that your group was allocated are clearly described. The introduction clearly outlines the key points of the project and the content is well described in the text.
- The choice of content, headings and sub-headings, diagrams, tables, graphs show a good understanding of the topic area. The choice of content and headings shows a good depth of research and understanding of the topic area. The ‘Summary of the inner ear’ table was a good idea and ties in all the information nicely.
- Content is correctly cited and referenced. There are large paragraphs of texts that have no references. The images provided display the copyright notices and explanations.
- The wiki has an element of teaching at a peer level using the student’s own innovative diagrams, tables or figures and/or using interesting examples or explanations. The introduction is well written and catches the readers interest and attention. Most of the normal development section is easy to understand, however the abnormalities section is difficult to understand due to the scientific jargon. Some hand-drawn images and tables would be beneficial in order to reduce the large paragraphs of text.
- Evidence of significant research relating to basic and applied sciences that goes beyond the formal teaching activities. The amount of information provided is evidence of the significant research that went into this project, and the sections such as ‘Technologies to overcome the problems’ shows research that goes ‘beyond the formal teaching activities’.
- Relates the topics and content of the Wiki entry to learning aims of embryology. The topics and content are well related to the learning aims of embryology
- The content of the wiki should demonstrate to the reader that your group has researched adequately on this topic and covered the key areas necessary to inform your peers in their learning. All the content is relevant to the key areas of the development of the eye and demonstrates an extensive amount of research into the topic.
- The amount of text is overwhelming. You should make better use of tables, figures and diagrams to breakup/replace the text.
- Adult anatomy and histology: no reference to histology. Would be beneficial to have a brief explanation of the functions of each structure.
- Overall impression: Very well researched topic and I'm sure the use of tables, pictures and diagrams will make it more appealing to read!
Mark Hill - Excellent critical assessment with detailed suggestions. 10/10
Q1. Identify and write a brief description of the findings of a recent research paper on development of one of the endocrine organs covered in today's practical.
Development of the Pancreas
This study aimed to determine the functional role of the SOX9 transcription factor in the process of pancreas development in humans. In mice, the SOX9 has been shown to support endocrine cell differentiation, and it is known that the transition of pancreatic progenitor cells to mature endocrine cells are regulated by the sequential activation and interaction of several transcription factors. The study characterized SOX9 expression during human fetal pancreas development by transfection with SOX9 siRNA or SOX9 expression vectors. The results indicated that SOX9 is important for the expression of NGN3 and molecular markers of endocrine cell differentiation in the human fetal pancreas.
Q2. Identify the embryonic layers and tissues that contribute to the developing teeth.
- Ectoderm from the first pharyngeal arch contributes the the enamel of the tooth. Furthermore, some cells of the oral epithelium differenciate into amnioblasts, which further contribute to the production of enamel.
- Neural crest gives rise to the dental papilla of the tooth, as well as various cell types (ondoblasts, cementoblasts, osteoblasts and fibroblasts).
- Mesoderm contributes to cells associated with the tooth, including: cementoblasts, osteoblasts and fibroblasts.
Mark Hill - very good 10/10
Mark Hill - Where is Lab 11 Assessment answer? Identify a recent research article (using the pubmed tags to cite) on iPS cells and summarise in a few paragraphs the main findings of the paper.