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Division of Evolutionary Developmental Biology (DEDB) and Division of Developmental and Cell Biology (DDCB): 2005 Spring Newsletter

In this newsletter:

Message from the Chair

Brian K. Hall

In the Spring 2005 newsletter I drew your attention to the association formed at the January 2004 meeting between the two SICB divisions of evolution and developmental biology (DEDB) and development and cell biology (DDCB). In particular, I drew attention to the clause "The Association shall continue as long as it is perceived by the membership in the interest of the participating parties, DDCB, DEDB and SICB." No divisional member having raised any question of dissolving the association, the association will continue. This is an association and not an amalgamation of the two divisions. The difference is critical. We continue to foster cell, developmental and evolutionary developmental biology, not subordinate cell or developmental to evo-devo. Consequently, presentations, symposia and other activities that further the three sub-fields have been encouraged vigorously, resulting in an unprecedented number of submissions for symposia; details of the exciting symposia organized for the Orlando meeting may be found in Ed's report below.

Your interest in serving the division was reflected in the willingness of individuals to stand for election as officers of the division. Billie Swalla will assume the Chair, Wendy Olson the position of program officer elect, and Marcus Davis the position of Secretary elect, all to take effect at the end of the January 2006 meeting in Orlando. Billie serves for 2006 and 2007. Wendy and Marcus will shadow Ed Molinar and Frietson Galis during 2006 and then assume the positions of programme officer and secretary, respectively, for the two years 2007 and 2008. Nathan Bird continues as the graduate student/postdoctoral fellow representative.

We retain our association with the two journals Evolution & Development and the Journal of Experimental Zoology Part B. Molecular and Development Evolution, and encourage you to subscribe and submit.

Intelligent design has reared its head in the U.S., a court case having begun late in September. Rudy Raff (first Chair of DEDB) produced an insightful analysis of and reading list concerning intelligent design in an editorial in Evolution & Development (Stand up for evolution, 2005, 7(4), 273-275.

Message from the Program Officer

Eduardo Rosa-Molinar

¡Saludos from Puerto Rico, the Island of Enchantment (no hurricanes this year)! For the 2005 Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) Annual Meeting in Orlando, Florida members submitted 1051 abstracts! This is about the same number as they were for our large and successful meetings over the past two years in San Diego and New Orleans (which were larger than the previous meetings in Anaheim and Toronto). The 2006 meeting will be held January 4-8 in the Buena Vista (formerly Wyndham) Palace Resort and Spa (they accept online reservations at: http://www.wyndhamevents.com/palace/06sicb.htm).

The breakdown of the abstracts is shown below:

A. Development (n=24 abstracts): DEDB and AMS

B. Behavior and Neurobiology (n=108 abstracts): DAB and DEE and DNB

C. Ecology and Environmental Biology (n=138 abstracts): DEE and DIZ

D. Evolution (n=169 abstracts): DEDB and DIZ

E. Morphology (n=187 abstracts): DVM and DAB and DNB

F. Physiology and Biochemistry (n=156 abstracts): DCE and DCPB

G. Regulatory Biology (n=70 abstracts): DCE and DCPB

H. Outreach, Education, and Policy (n=15 abstracts): AMS

I. Sessions associated with symposia (n=88 abstracts): AMS

J. Mini-symposia: 14 abstracts

K, Symposia: 172 abstracts

AMS-American Microscopial Society; DAB - Division of Animal Behavior; DCE - Division of Comparative Endocrinology; DCPB - Division of Comparative Physiology & Biochemistry; DDCB - Division of Developmental & Cell Biology; DEDB - Division of Evolutionary; Developmental Biology; DEE - Division of Ecology & Evolution; DIZ - Division of Invertebrate Zoology; DNB - Division of Neurobiology; DSEB - Division of Systematic & Evolutionary Biology; DVM - Division of Vertebrate Morphology

For the 2006 DEDB and DDCB we will sponsor two symposia "Movers and Shakers: The Evolution and Development of Mesoderm" organized by Brad Davidson and John Gerhart and "Zebrafish in Comparative Context" organized by Jackie Webb and Thomas Schilling

Keep checking the SICB website (http://www.sicb.org) and reading the DEDB newsletter for updates regarding the 2006 meeting in Orlando, Florida.

I want to remind you that the Divisional Program Officers (DPO's) unanimously agreed that the Best Student Paper (BSP) award programs administered by most of the SICB divisions would benefit from standardizing some (but not all) of the procedures and requirements of those programs. Our specific recommendations to the Executive Committee and membership were as follows:

(1) eliminate division affiliation requirements for the BSP programs (currently division affiliation is a requirement by DCPB, DEE, and DIZ, but not DAB, DCE, DDCB, DEDB, DSEB, or DVM)

Rationale for Change: This change acknowledges the scientific overlap among the divisions and promotes interaction among them. In addition, the requirement recommended for elimination is fairly minor, as students can change divisional affiliation with a single click on their SICB member information page. This latter point means that enforcement of the current requirement is difficult, at best.

(2) an individual awarded the first place BSP (oral) from any division will be ineligible to compete for the BSP (oral) in that same division or any other division in the future. Similarly, an individual awarded the first place BSP (poster) from any division will be ineligible to compete for the BSP (poster) in that same division or any other division in the future. An individual could compete for a poster award after winning an oral award, and vice versa (currently there are divisional restrictions in the number of awards that any individual can win in DCPB, DDCB, DEE, and DEDB, but not in DAB, DCE, DIZ, DSEB, or DVM).

Rationale for Change: This change would give the society an increased opportunity to acknowledge a larger number of students making outstanding presentations. With elimination of division affiliation requirements (#1), it seemed important to enforce this rule at the society level rather than just at the divisional level.

The DPO's are not recommending standardizing the other differences in divisional programs (such as number of individual awards, amount of awards, criteria used [i.e. standardize the oral and poster evaluation forms.]). We will need to vote on the proposed changes. I will ask Frietson to put recommended changes on the divisional electronic bulletin board ASAP for discussion before we vote on it. Check the electronic bulletin board and provide your input on this important issue. I would like for all of you to think about this and let me know ASAP if there are problems with this. I would like to vote on this at the 2006 meeting in Orlando Florida.

I want to review and agree on the keyword list that SICB uses for DEDB and DDCB abstract submission. This will make programming easier and provide better linkages with symposia and contributed papers and poster. I finally have the list of keywords and I will get this list posted on the electronic bulletin board for your review and comment. I really need membership input! I hope to vote on this at this year's meeting.

Oxford University Press is the new publisher for "Integrative and Comparative Biology (ICB)." I am sure that Oxford University Press and our new editor (the search is ongoing) will address the factors that made ICB less attractive for the publication of symposia. Keep checking the SICB website for updates.

This is all for now. Keep sending your original research papers and/or symposia to Evolution and Development (Blackwell Publishing), Molecular and Developmental Evolution (Wiley), American Naturalist (University of Chicago Press), Biosciences (AIBS), and soon Integrative and Comparative Biology (Oxford University Press). These journals are all support SICB. I hope to see you in Orlando, Florida.

¡Hasta Pronto!

Message from the Secretary

Frietson Galis

Dear members of the DEDB and DDCB,

I would like to congratulate

-Billie Swalla, our new Chair-Elect
-Wendy Olson, our new Program Officer-Elect
-Marc Davis, our new Secretary-Elect

and to thank all the candidates for running for these offices.

The changes for the bylaws that we had proposed in the spring newsletter have been accepted by the members and have been added to our website. Many thanks to Ruediger Birenheide for always being so quick in updating our website.

We kindly ask you again to provide a paragraph on your research and to illustrate this with an image in jpg-format (galis@rulsfb.leidenuniv.nl). For inspiration you can check the web pages of the DEE: http://sicb.org/divisions/dee.php3

The meeting in Orlando has a strong program in evolutionary developmental biology. I look forward to seeing you there in January!

Message from the Student/Postdoc Representative

Nathan Bird

Greetings DEDB graduate students and post-docs. First, I would like to send well-wishes to all who have either been directly affected, or having family or friends affected by the hurricanes in the Gulf Coast. My thoughts are with you, and I am hopeful to still see most of you at the upcoming meeting in Orlando. As usual, there are wonderful opportunities available for us to present our work, take part in informative workshops to get the most out of our graduate experience and help as we move forward towards getting a post-doc or job, and receive support from the society (be sure to apply for GIAR/FGST if you are eligible, deadlines are fast approaching - Nov 21st). Also, don't forget the society/divisional socials!

Currently, DEDB is co-sponsoring two exciting symposia: "Movers and Shakers: The Evolution and Development of Mesoderm" (co-organized by our former grad/post-doc representative Brad Davidson) and "Zebrafish in Comparative Context", organized by Jackie Webb and Tom Schilling. Both are sure to be outstanding and very informative, and I hope everyone will mark these talks down and attend. Also, I highly encourage all of you to attend the DEDB business meeting, it is the best way to get involved and stay informed regarding where our division is heading in the future. See you all in Orlando!

Best Wishes,

Nathan Bird

Link to officer list on DEDB page