Dr. Mariani’s laboratory studies the development and repair of the mammalian skeleton, with an emphasis on the ribs and handplate. They use standard and conditional knock-out techniques in mouse models and mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells.


New ways to regenerate bone emerge from the adult zebrafish face. (Image by Sandeep Paul and Seth Ruffins)

USC Stem Cell researchers use zebrafish to understand the role of cartilage in bone repair

Scientists have long believed that the processes required for embryonic development are recapitulated during the regeneration of damaged body parts, such as fractured bones. In a new study published in Development, USC …

The gene Prkci promotes the generation of differentiated cells (red). However if Prkci activity is reduced or absent, neural stem cells (green) are promoted. (Image by In Kyoung Mah)

A Prkci gene keeps stem cells in check

When it comes to stem cells, too much of a good thing isn’t wonderful: producing too many new stem cells may lead to cancer; producing too few inhibits the repair and maintenance …

USC graduate student Du Jiang (Photo by Cristy Lytal)

Tri-institutional Stem Cell Retreat brings together Broad centers from USC, UCLA and UCSF

Working alone, a scientist or university can only make so much progress in finding answers to basic questions or new treatments for diseases ranging from HIV to cancer to diabetes. That’s why …

“Tin Woman” Michaela Patterson, a postdoctoral scholar in the lab of Henry Sucov, studies heart regeneration — with no help from the Wizard of Oz. (Photo by Cristy Lytal)

Halloween retreat showcases USC’s “scary smart” stem cell researchers

It was no tricks and all treats at the seventh annual retreat for the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at USC, held at the university’s …

Mouse rib cage stained to show cartilage (blue) and bone (red). In adult mice, surgically removed sections of either portion can fully regenerate. (Image by Francesca Mariani)

USC researchers discover the healing power of “rib tickling”

Unlike salamanders, mammals can’t regenerate lost limbs, but they can repair large sections of their ribs. In a new study in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, a team directed by …

Multi-well plate (Image courtesy of the National Institutes of Health)

USC Stem Cell and the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center accelerate drug discovery

Three teams of USC stem cell researchers have won a coveted prize — the opportunity to test 3,000 drug candidates or chemicals for the potential to help patients. Two teams will focus …

Keynote speaker Clive Svendsen (right) and Director Andy McMahon

A Retreat from everything but stem cells

It wasn’t the pristine 27-hole course that drew more than 120 stem cell researchers from USC and beyond to the Desert Princess Golf Resort near Palm Springs. It was the sixth annual …

Embryonic stem cells that have differentiated into neurons (Image by In Kyoung Mah/Mariani Lab)

Winner of the September 2013 USC Stem Cell Image of the Month Contest

Dr. Andrew McMahon, Dr. Seth Ruffins and the judges of the USC Stem Cell Image of the Month contest would like to congratulate our September 2013 winner, In Kyoung Mah, a graduate …

From left, Gage Crump, Jay R. Lieberman and Francesca Mariani (Photo by Cristy Lytal)

USC announces winners of first Regenerative Medicine Initiative awards

Three newly assembled disease teams within USC Stem Cell will take the early steps this year that might lead to future stem-cell based therapies for certain forms of deafness, bone defects and …

Francesca Mariani, PhD