Dr. Bell’s lab aims to illuminate the epigenetic mechanisms that establish and maintain stable gene expression states. Ultimately, we aim to unravel the crosstalk between epigenetic regulation and cell plasticity.


Oliver Bell and Daniel Bsteh

USC Stem Cell study throws our understanding of gene regulation for a loop

The blueprint for human life lies within the DNA in the nucleus of each of our cells. In human cells, around six and a half feet of this genetic material must be …

Building an Incubator for Medicine of the 21st Century

Building an Incubator for Medicine of the 21st Century

USC Stem Cell is pleased to introduce our new publication. We hope you’ll enjoy reflecting back on our history, while looking ahead to the transformative times to come. Read now at

Neuronal specification is compromised in Zfp462 deleted cells. Immunofluorescence images of wildtype (WT) and Zfp462 deleted (Zfp462 KO) cells during neural differentiation. The neuronal lineage marker SOX1 is shown in green and the endodermal lineage marker FOXA2 is in magenta. Non-neural cells are detected during the neural differentiation of Zfp462 KO cells. © Bell Lab / NCB /IMBA.

Weiss-Kruszka syndrome and the failure to establish neuronal identity

Weiss-Kruszka syndrome is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by craniofacial anomalies, developmental delay, and autistic features. Researchers at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the …

Kuo-Chang (Ted) Tseng from the Crump Lab and Michelle Hung from the Ichida Lab enjoy a beachside brainstorm.

Scientists feel the sand between their toes at the retreat for USC’s stem cell department

A pair of young scientists picked up a piece of driftwood and thoughtfully traced a series of letters in the wet sand of Ventura Beach. The word “microglia”—referring to the immune cells …

Bell in the lab

Drug-like molecule points to novel strategies for cancer therapy

A decade ago, genome sequencing revealed a big surprise: about 50 percent of human cancers are linked to mutations in what are known as epigenetic regulators, which control the activity of genes. …

Oliver Bell

Design redundancy is in our DNA

Design redundancy is not only an invention of engineers for building machines, but also a principle of nature for designing organisms. This principle is at play in the regulation of the genes responsible for directing stem cells to multiply themselves in the developing mouse embryo, as described in a new study in Science Advances.

Oliver Bell, PhD