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 Keith Latham, PhD
 Professor of Animal Science and Adjunct Professor of Obstetrics

The past two decades have ushered in landmark discoveries in the reproductive and developmental sciences of significant potential impact to human health and animal agriculture, including advancements in assisted reproductive technologies and derivation of human embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells and the transition of regenerative medicine from the realm of theory to application. Michigan State University has a long history of excellence in the reproductive and developmental sciences, and is unique in having both cutting-edge research in the reproductive and developmental sciences across a wide range of animal models, clinical entities and in population-based human reproductive outcomes all on a single campus. The Reproductive and Developmental Sciences Program  (RDSP) is composed of a strong and interactive group of faculty from the College of Human Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine and the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources with diverse expertise and research interests who are engaged in fundamental and translational research geared towards advancements in regenerative medicine.

Vision: To be the leading Center of Excellence in the Reproductive and Developmental Sciences and enhance research partnerships with other research universities and international entities and uphold the traditions of an exceptional land grant institution.

Mission: The overall goal of the Reproductive and Developmental Sciences Program at Michigan State University is to leverage and expand ongoing collaborations between faculty working in animal science, human medicine, veterinary medicine, genetics, and regenerative medicine and to further formalize this unique trans disciplinary focus in a manner that will enhance the rate of scientific discovery and the quality of graduate and postdoctoral training.

This Month

October 15, 2018 Anthony Hall 1310/GRRC 1104 Guest Lecturer Joel E Soler (MSU) "The Effects of Chronic Daytime Light Deficiency on Hippocampal Plasticityin a Diurnal Animal Model
October 29, 2018 Anthony Hall 1310/GRRC 1102 Faculty Seminar Dr. Hanne Hoffman
November 5, 2018 Anthony Hall 1310/GRRC 1102 Faculty Seminar Dr. Sascha Drewlo - "Changing fetal maternal healthcare in the first trimester- Biology and clinical applications of the cervical trophblast"
November 19, 2018 Anthony Hall 1310/GRRC 1102 RIP Meeting (Trainee) T32 RIP: Ariadna Ochoa-Bernal (Fazleabas Lab)
T32 RIP: Greg Burns (Fazleabas Lab)
November 26, 2018 Anthony Hall 1310/GRRC 1103 Gruaduate Trainee Research Briefs Kaitlin Karl-Research Update: The Effect of Different Doses of Follicle-Stimulating Hormone During Superovulation on Ovarian Function in Dairy Cattle


Michigan State University recently named five new MSU Foundation Professors, a designation given to outstanding faculty who demonstrate excellence in research and teaching, while enhancing the prominence of the institution.

“These honorees are internationally recognized researchers,” said MSU Provost June Pierce Youatt. “Their scholarship and contributions to their fields represent a level of engagement and accomplishment that MSU is proud to support.”

These scientists join 31 other researchers who have been named MSU Foundation Professors. Three of the latest recipients are current faculty, while two are new to the university.

“While their areas of investigation vary, they are united in one aspect: their work is having profound impacts on the world’s most challenging problems,” said Stephen Hsu, Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies.

Read Full Arcticle on MSU Today

Dr. Richard Pursley Receives receive the prestigious National Association of Animal Breeders Award for 2018

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Congratulations Dr. Richard Pursley the first in the Department of Animal Science to receive the prestigious National Association of Animal Breeders Award for 2018. This award recognizes outstanding contributions to the artificial insemination industry. An excerpt from his nomination letter captures some of Dr. Pursley’s accomplishments: “Dr. Richard Pursley co-developed with Dr. Milo Wiltbank what is now the world’s most widely used ovulation synchronization protocol they called, “Ovsynch”. Proof of the widespread interest in this technology is easy to demonstrate. For example, a recent Google search for the term “Ovsynch” resulted in 51,700 hits! Moreover, according to Hoard’s Dairyman, Ovsynch is one of the best and most economical timed AI programs ever developed for the dairy industry. In 2007, the impact of Dr. Pursley’s research and extension programs was recognized as one of four CSREES projects (selected from 400) with the greatest impact in U.S. agriculture and featured on the CSREES website. In addition, Dr. Pursley’s research primarily on Ovsynch and its improvements has been cited >5000 times according to Google Scholar. His seminal 1995 paper on Ovsynch was listed recently as one of 100 most influential (no. 7 in all of reproductive biology) science papers you should read before you die. The Ovsynch technology revolution has indeed caused a paradigm shift in applied reproductive research in dairy cattle.”


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Michigan State University’s Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biologyin the College of Human Medicine has grown in prestige in the number of top researchers it has attracted, as well as garnering more federal grant funding.

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RDSP visited by Secretary of Argiculture, Sonny Perdue

Jim Ireland explains to the Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue, who visited campus April 3, 2018, the USDA-NIH dual purpose research program and how the bovine model is being used by his research group to improve assisted reproductive technologies.

Jim Ireland explains to the Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue, who visited campus April 3, 2018, the USDA-NIH dual purpose research program and how the bovine model is being used by his research group to improve assisted reproductive technologies.

TDRD5 binds piRNA precursors and selectively enhances pachytene piRNA processing in mice

tdrd5Pachytene piRNAs are the most abundant piRNAs in mammalian adult testes. They aregenerated from long precursor transcripts by the primary piRNA biogenesis pathway but thefactors involved in pachytene piRNA precursors processing are poorly understood. Here weshow that the Tudor domain-containing 5 (TDRD5) protein is essential for pachytene piRNAbiogenesis in mice. Conditional inactivation of TDRD5 in mouse postnatal germ cells revealsthat TDRD5 selectively regulates the production of pachytene piRNAs from abundant piRNA-producing precursors, with little effect on low-abundant piRNAs. Unexpectedly, TDRD5 is notrequired for the 5′end processing of the precursors, but is crucial for promoting production ofpiRNAs from the other regions of the transcript. Furthermore, we show that TDRD5 is anRNA-binding protein directly associating with piRNA precursors. These observationsestablish TDRD5 as a piRNA biogenesis factor and reveal two genetically separable steps atthe start of pachytene piRNA processing

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