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From developing cancer treatments to managing the ecosystem, UCLA biologists are leading the way in addressing society’s most urgent challenges.
Growing up on a sheep farm in rural Australia, Professor Amander Clark had plenty of opportunities to witness the miracle of birth. It made a profound impression on her as a child who loved science. Her teachers and parents alike encouraged her to attend university in Melbourne, where she became fascinated with cell biology. It wasn’t until her post-doctoral work at the University of California in San Francisco that she turned her attention fully to the process of embryo formation and human reproduction.
“My overall research goal is to improve human fertility and child health by harnessing the power of stem cells,” says Prof. Clark, who is currently professor and vice chair of the Department of Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology in the life sciences at UCLA. Prof. Clark’s pioneering research in human reproduction has led to the creation of a roadmap of prenatal sperm and egg development, which scientists around the world use to create these cells in a dish from stem cells. This research tool also helps scientists identify the key molecular events that are critical to human reproduction and the basis of germ cell tumors.
Prof. Clark’s groundbreaking work is a great example of how the UCLA Department of Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology is leading the way to translate discoveries into solutions. Using cutting-edge research, its world-class faculty and staff are advancing our understanding of life on earth at the cellular and molecular levels. From developing novel cancer treatments to improving food production and ecosystem management, the department is addressing society’s most urgent challenges in biology, health and sustainability. Your donation to this department would be a gift to life itself.
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