Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore

Denise Cheah is a research assistant at the NUS Evolutionary Biology Lab working on unravelling the evolution and development of a novel abdominal appendage in black scavenger flies. Her current work is an extension of her undergraduate thesis project, as she enjoys how evo-devo techniques and perspectives offer many intriguing insights into the diversification of life. She is particularly interested in the origin of novel or unorthodox traits and the role they play in subsequent major evolutionary transitions and adaptive radiations.”



Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore

Yuchen Long acquired his PhD in 2015 in the lab of Ben Scheres at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, where he studied the mechanism of cell fate specification in the Arabidopsis root. He then studied the biomechanics of plant growth in the lab of Arezki Boudaoud at ENS de Lyon in France. In 2020, he started his lab at the National University of Singapore, and his lab is interested in plant developmental regulations by biomechanical cues, particularly cellular pressure.



Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore

Suriya Murugesan is a postdoctoral fellow in Antónia Monteiro’s Evo-Devo lab at NUS, where he also completed his PhD. For his doctoral thesis, he worked on the gene-regulatory network of butterfly eyespots, using comparative transcriptome and chromatin analyses to identify the ancestral network that led to the origin of butterfly eyespots. His current work focuses on the evolution of cis-regulatory elements and their role in the development of traits.



Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore

Jun Nishiyama is an Assistant Professor at Duke-NUS Medical School. His research aims to understand molecular regulations of synapses in health and mental disorders using advanced optical tools. He received an M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Tokyo, completed his residency in psychiatry at the University of Tokyo Hospital, and performed his postdoctoral studies at Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience. He pioneered CRISPR/Cas9-mediated in vivo genome editing in the brain and obtained awards including the Japan Neuroscience Society Young Investigator Award in 2018 and Singapore National Research Foundation (NRF) fellowship in 2020



University of Warwick and National University of Singapore

The Saunders lab studies how complex three-dimensional tissue shape emerges during embryo development. His group utilises high spatiotemporal resolution imaging combined with advanced genetic and biophysical techniques to record organ formation at unprecedented detail. We use two main model systems in the lab: the formation of vertebrate muscle (Zebrafish); and heart morphogenesis (Drosophila (fruit fly)). These systems offer us the imaging capabilities and genetic tractability required to make meaningful insights into how these organs form. We combine this with physics approaches to provide interdisciplinary insights into how organs form.



Mechanobiology Institute, National University of Singapore

Yusuke Toyama received his PhD in plasma physics from Osaka University in 2003. During his postdoctoral training at Duke University, he started working on the mechanobiology of Drosophila embryogenesis. Dr Toyama established his lab at National University of Singapore in 2010 and was promoted to a tenured Associate Professor in 2018. He is also a principal investigator at Mechanobiology Institute, Singapore. His lab has been investigating how an apoptotic cell is removed from its neighbors using Drosophila, mammalian cell culture, and mouse as model systems.



Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Fengwei Yu obtained his Ph. D degree at the National University of Singapore in 2003. Immediately after graduation, he joined Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory (TLL) to establish his independent research group and was promoted to be Principal Investigator in 2007 and Senior Principal Investigator in 2013. Fengwei is currently an adjunct Associate Professor at NUS. His research interest is mainly focused on neuronal pruning and neurodegeneration in the fly model. He has published some research articles in journals including Nature Neuroscience and Neuron. He was awarded the Singapore National Young Scientist Award in the biomedical category for his research on neural development and neurological disorders in 2007.



Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore

Hongyan Wang is Professor and Deputy Director of the Neuroscience & Behavioral Disorders Program at Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore. Her lab focuses on understanding molecular mechanisms underlying the proliferation, asymmetric division, and differentiation of Drosophila neural stem cells. She is among the first few researchers who established Drosophila neuroblasts as a new model for studying stem cell self-renewal and brain tumor formation. She is a member of the Asia-Pacific Drosophila Board and an elected EMBO Associate Member.



The Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Biology, Kyoto University.

Takafumi Ichikawa obtained his PhD in Agricultural Science from Kyoto University in 2017 and moved to Germany to undertake postdoctoral training in the lab of Takashi Hiiragi at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL). In 2021, he was appointed Assistant Professor of the Hiiragi lab in the Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Biology (ASHBi) at Kyoto University.



School of Science, The University of Tokyo

Naoki Irie received his Ph.D in Kyoto University in 2008, and he has been working in the field of evolution and development, congenital malformations and microchimerism. He became a faculty member of the University of Tokyo in 2013. He has clarified that the developmental hourglass model best explains the general relationship between embryogenesis and evolution in vertebrates, echinoderms. He has further demonstrated how repeated gene re-usage has a double edged sword effect on evolutionary diversification (facilitation of evolving new traits VS constraints on phenotypic diversification). He has been contributing to the biology community by co-launching the AsiaEvo conference, working as an associate editor of Zoological letters and Journal of Experimental Zoology part B.



Graduate School of Lifesciences, Tohoku University

Minako Ueda obtained her Ph. D. from Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University in 2005. She had her postdoctoral training as a JSPS research fellow at the University of Freiburg, Germany and at Nagoya University. She undertook an Assistant Professor position at Nara Institute of Science and Technology in 2011, and then became designated Lecturer at Nagoya University in 2013. In 2020, she was appointed as Full Professor at Graduate School of Lifesciences, Tohoku University. Her research focuses on the embryonic development of Arabidopsis thaliana with the aim of understanding how the basic plant shape is formed from a single cell, the fertilized egg.



RIKEN Center for Biosystems Dynamics Research

Kyogo Kawaguchi is a biophysicist interested in the physical principles of multicellular dynamics and cell differentiation. After finishing his PhD in Physics at The University of Tokyo with Masaki
Sano, he did his postdoc in the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School supervised by Allon Klein. He moved back to Japan and started his group as a RIKEN Hakubi Team Leader in the Kobe campus of RIKEN.



Institute of Molecular Embryology and Genetics, Kumamoto University

Asako Shindo acquired her Ph.D. from the Graduate University for Advanced Studies, Sokendai in 2008. During her Ph.D., she was supervised by Prof. Naoto Ueno at the National Institute of Basic Biology, Okazaki. She then moved to the USA and pursued her postdoctoral research under the supervision of Prof. John Wallingford at the University of Texas at Austin. She became an Assistant Professor at Nagoya Univeristy in 2014, and started her laboratory at the Institute of Molecular Embryology and Genetics, Kumamoto University in 2020.



Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University

Takayuki Suzuki obtained his Ph. D. from Graduate School of Biological Science, Nara Institute of Science and Technology in 2004. He pursued his postdoctoral research at University of Wisconsin-Madison under Prof. John F. Fallon (2004-2007). He then moved back to Japan to take an Assistant Professor position at Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer, in Tohoku University and became a JST PRESTO scientist (2008-2012). In 2010, he was appointed as Assistant Professor (2010-2015), Lecturer (2016-2017), and Associate Professor (2018-present) at Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University.



National Institute for Basic Biology

Teruyuki Niimi received his PhD in Agricultural Sciences from Nagoya University in 1993. He had his postdoctoral training as a JSPS research fellow at Nagoya University from 1993 to 1995 (under Prof. Toshinobu  Yaginuma) and at Biozentrum University of Basel, Switzerland from 1995 to 1997 (under Prof. Walter J. Goehing). He returned to Japan to take a JST PRESTO position in 2001 and then became Assistant Professor in 1997 at Nagoya University. In 2015, he was appointed as Professor at Division of Evolutionary Developmental Biology, National Institute for Basic Biology (NIBB).



Institute for Genetic Medicine, Hokkaido University

Fumio Motegi received his doctoral degree at the University of Tokyo. He pursued his postdoctoral work with Prof. Asako Sugimoto at RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology and with Prof. Geraldine Seydoux at Johns Hopkins University. He joined Temasek Lifesciences Laboratory and Mechanobiology Institute as Principal Investigator in 2012 and holds a joint appointment as Assistant Professor at Department of Biological Sciences at National University of Singapore. In 2021, he was appointed as Professor at Institute for Genetic Medicine, Hokkaido University.