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Frontiers in Reproduction (FIR)

Molecular and Cellular Concepts and Applications

Marine Biological Laboratory

Woods Hole, MA

May 3-June 14, 2015

FIR is an intensive 6 week laboratory and lecture course for scientists-in-training who seek to improve their knowledge and experimental skills in order to pursue a career in the Reproductive Sciences.  FIR is held each summer at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL)  in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, a world-famous training ground for Experimental Biologists.  We welcome applications from graduate students, postdoctoral and clinical fellows as well as junior faculty.  Twenty participants are selected each year from a competitive admissions pool.


FIR is directed by Mario Ascoli (The University of Iowa) and is divided into three 2-week sections.   Each section consists of lectures, discussions, informal seminars, laboratory exercises, demonstrations and one on one tutorial
s.  Section 1 is directed by Lane Christenson (The University of Kansas Medical Center) and covers signal transduction as well as transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression in the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis.  Section 2 is directed by Rafael Fissore (The University of Massachusetts) and covers gametogenesis, fertilization, cloning and stem cells. Section 3 is directed by Larry Reynolds (North Dakota State University) and covers transgenic technology, development of the reproductive tract and implantation biology.   FIR closes with a 2-day Symposium that features research presentations from the current class and selected FIRbees from previous years, along with additional distinguished guest speakers.

FIR Faculty and FIRBees are free from other responsibilities found at home institutions, enabling full immersion in the FIR experience. Participants’ only responsibilities are to teach and learn. These unique characteristics of FIR, coupled with the rich scientific atmosphere of the MBL, provide an informal and relaxed setting to complement our intense lecture and laboratory program.

FIR is supported by major grants from the NICHD and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund.  Additional scholarship funding is provided by The American Society of Reproductive Medicine, The American Society for Cell Biology, and the Anita Payne Scholarship from the Society for the Study of Reproduction and MBL Endowed Scholarships.

FIR is now entering its 18th year and we have 308 alumni (FIRbees) worldwide.  Spend 6 weeks with us in the summer of 2015, get immersed in science, make new friend, become a FIRbee