Luiza Ghila joined the lab

DSCN0100Before coming to Bergen, I was a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer (maître-assistant) in the laboratory of Prof. Pedro Herrera, at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva, in Switzerland. In the past 4 years in this position, my research focused on pancreatic β-cell regeneration and cell plasticity, and recently, we were able to uncover a second age-dependent regenerative mechanism involved in spontaneous murine pancreatic regeneration (Chera, Baronnier, Ghila et al. (2014) Nature). Furthermore, we characterized the signals governing islet cell conversion upon massive β-cell ablation in adult mice, results that are now part of another manuscript in preparation (Thorel*, Ghila* et al., in preparation). Moreover, I have implemented, adapted and systematically used a technique for transplanting mouse and human islets or purified mouse and human islet cells (FACS) into the anterior chamber of the eye of NSG host mice, as previously described in scientific literature. With this minimally invasive technique, transplanted islets/sorted-cells engrafted on the iris are accessible for recurrent live imaging and analyses. Using this technique I was able to visualize the ablation of β-cells and α-to-β conversion phenomena, as well as modulating this process using local or general administration of different compounds.