Rita Mateus at the 2022 International Symposium on Chemical Biology

Rita Mateus at the 2022 International Symposium on Chemical Biology

The 2022 International Symposium on Chemical Biology will feature novel and exciting research in the field of chemical biology. The scientists invited to speak are leading experts in the field with years and decades of experience. But the event will also bring together the many early-stage researchers – from master students, PhD students to young PIs – who form the future of the field. Of these, the NCCR is excited to host two emerging scientists who have recently established their own laboratories, Rita Matias and Addai Diego Colom. We were curious to learn what aspects of their identity as scientists have helped them reach what they are today – and we spoke to Rita and Adai’s past and present colleagues to find out. In this article, we start with Rita!

Rita Metius – Forms leading to function at the subcellular scale

During her speech titled “Leading Forms to Work at the Sub-cell Scale,” Rita will talk about a project she started during her time in Geneva as a postdoc. She will focus her current research objectives on: To understand the process by which zebrafish can camouflage at the cellular level by creating structural colors and images, In summary, Rita’s group uses a novel quantitative approach that employs optical microscopy to study the specialized pigment cells of zebrafish, iridophorus, Iridophores are guanine crystals of a particular shape and size that reflect light through their lattice organization. Rita aims to uncover how the crystal’s morphology is controlled to enable the zebrafish’s brightness and its efficient camouflage. This project is an aspect of her current work on growth and shape acquisition from organ to organ, as described in a Joint group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics and the Cluster of Excellence Physics of Life in Dresden, Germany,

Discussing with Rita’s previous colleagues, she shared that her “positive mood, amazing creativity and infinite curiosity”, are the perfect combination for her to succeed as a scientist. Her genuine interest in science also meant that Rita was always “on top of all the new updates of literature in her field”. This fact helped him to develop and nurture the project on structural colors in zebrafish. This innovative project combines the work of physicists and biologists, and Rita’s “social skills and interest in other people’s research” will be an important basis for growing up in such a cross-disciplinary context.

Not only are we looking forward to learning more about her research, but we certainly have a lot to learn from youth group leaders like Rita – “Her research projects represent a challenging task that will enhance our general knowledge that how nature is wonderfully organized”

Rita. about

Rita Mateus at the Nova University of Lisbon as Prof. Antonio Jacinto, where he worked with the zebrafish caudal fin to study how the fin reproduces its shape and size. Curious to learn more about promoting morphogenesis, she worked in a post-doc At the University of Geneva, Prof. Marcos Gonzalez-Gateon’s Laboratory, Here, Rita worked on two main projects using the same model organism. The first project focused on how morphogens control organ growth and the second project focused on how size and shape are controlled at the subcellular scale. In a later project, Rita aimed to learn how structural colors in zebrafish fins could be regulated by physics and biology simultaneously at the subcellular level. Rita is now a group leader Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics And this Life Excellence Physics Group in DresdenGermany.

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