Skip to main content
MenuSearch & Directory

Laurence Lemaire, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor


PhD, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland

MSc in Biomedical Sciences, University of Liège, Belgium

BSc in Biomedical Sciences, University of Liège, Belgium

Research Interests

I am a developmental biologist interested in how cells acquire their identity and how these identities emerge during evolution. To address these questions, I am using the invertebrate chordate CionaCiona with its fast development and fixed lineages, is an incredible model. During metamorphosis, most of the Ciona larval nervous system undergoes apoptosis, and the adult nervous system arises from pools of neural progenitors. My lab will focus on these progenitors and their differentiation paths. More precisely, I am studying their nature in the larval nervous system and investigating if they represent a homogenous cell population or are already committed progenitors to specific fates. Simultaneously, my laboratory is deciphering their differentiation programs into definitive adult cell types sketching the developmental roadmap happening during metamorphosis. Moreover, by identifying the cell types present in the adult nervous system and comparing them to vertebrates, I aim to uncover vertebrate novelties and how cells acquire new properties.

Labs and Facilities

I will use a combination of single cell genomics and imaging in Ciona.

Publications and Media Placements

Lemaire, L. A.*, Cao, C.*, Yoon, P. H., Long, J., Levine, M. The hypothalamus predates the origin of vertebrates.
Science Advances, 2021, 7, eabf7452.
*These authors contributed equally to this work.

Cao C.*, Lemaire L. A.*, Wang W., Yoon P. H., Choi Y. A., Parsons L. R., Matese J. C., Wang W., Levine M., Chen
K. Comprehensive single-cell transcriptome lineages of a proto-vertebrate. Nature, 2019, 571, 349-354.
*These authors contributed equally to this work.

Kim Y. H., Larsen H. L., Rué P., Lemaire L. A., Ferrer J., Grapin-Botton A. Cell cycle-dependent differentiation
dynamics balances growth and endocrine differentiation in the pancreas. PloS Biology, 2015, 13, e1002111.

Lemaire L. A., Goulley J., Kim Y. H., Carat S., Jacquemin P., Rougemont J., Constam D. B., Grapin-Botton A.
Bicaudal C1 promotes pancreatic NEUROG3+ endocrine progenitor differentiation and ductal morphogenesis.
Development, 2015, 142, 858-870.

Choi, E., Kraus, M. R., Lemaire, L. A., Yoshimoto, M., Vemula, S., Potter, L. A., Manduchi, E., Stoeckert, C. J.
Jr., Grapin-Botton, A. Magnuson, M. A. Dual lineage-specific expression of Sox17 during mouse embryogenesis.
Stem Cells, 2012, 30, 2297-2308.

Honors and Awards

  • PhD Student Poster Prize, 18th International Conference of the International Society of Differentiation and the British Society for Developmental Biology, 2014, London, UK