Thank you for your interest in the Woodruff Lab Summer Internships. We are no longer accepting applications for Summer 2017, as all positions have been filled.
The Women's Health Research Institute offers several summer laboratory internships to senior and junior high school students and undergraduate students interested in gaining experience in oncofertility. The Woodruff Lab, housed on Northwestern University's Chicago campus provides areas of study in the following disciplines:
The primary goals of the laboratory are to understand the development of the, identify markers and determinants of quality, and discover how this basic biology can be applied to patients. This research includes the biological, cellular, and molecular mechanisms that regulate the development of the , such as the study of endocrine, structural, and other environmental cues in the , and an understanding of cell death within the follicle and supporting cells.
In vitro follicle growth of primary follicles
The group is interested in understanding the cues that small follicles require to grow and develop. They have developed four different methods that support thedevelopment of primary follicles, which have begun to shed crucial insights into how the process of follicle development occurs in the context of the . These methods include: (1) co-culture with theca-interstitial cells and macrophages, (2) co-culture with mouse embryonic fibroblasts, (3) culture in a defined stem-cell based, and (4) cohort culture with multiple follicles grown together.
6 –fold volume increase in human). In collaboration with Lonnie Shea’s team, the lab has identified that a three-dimensional encapsulated culture system supports the formation and development of . Using alginate , they successfully supported the growth of mouse follicles and are now developing next-generation three-dimensional matrices, which can provide support and simultaneously decrease rigidity as a follicle expands.grow many times their original diameter from the prenatal to terminal sizes (~37-fold volume increase in mouse and ~2.4 x 10
Chemotherapies and radiation cause unintended apoptosis of ovarian. Recent work from the lab and others suggests that the p53 family of is involved in this cell death response. The team is investigating the mechanisms that mitigate this off-target effect on primordial . They are currently blocking the action of p53 family in conjunction with applications of existing chemotherapeutics. The findings have identified that this co-treatment can prevent apoptosis but not DNA cell-damage. The lab is currently examining the health of the remaining and identifying whether endogenous mechanisms can repair the damage of surviving follicles.