David F. Albertini, PhD

Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics
Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology

Ph.D., Harvard University, 1975
Postdoctoral: University of Connecticut, 1975-1977


Our laboratory employs genetic, molecular and imaging strategies to study basic aspects of the process of reproduction that bear on human disease and its clinical management by stem cell therapy. The overall emphasis is on Women's Health in relation to causes of human infertility, ovarian cancer, and the deployment of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ARTS) for improving egg and embryo quality in human and animal models. Three project areas are actively under study:

  1. Fertility Preservation-ameliorating the loss of fertility experienced by women undergoing radiation or chemotherapy is the goal of this research. Using our long standing interest in signaling between the somatic and germ cell components of the ovarian follicle, we have intiated projects that focus on (1) understanding the mechanisms that underlie DNA damage and repair in oocytes following chemotherapy or radiation induced damage; and (2) implementation of cryopreservation strategies for oocytes and ovarian tissues that could subsequently be used for embryo production.
  2. Cell Cycle Regulation In Oocytes and Embryos-how modifications in cell cycle checkpoint control ensure chromosome balance during meiosis in oocytes and mitosis in embryos is investigated by biochemical, live cell imaging, and pharmacological approaches that permit assessment of genomic integrity during cell cycle progression. This strategy is used to understand the effects of maternal aging and/or environmental chemicals (endocrine disruptors) on oocytes or embryos produced by ARTs (in vitro maturation, in vitro fertilization).
  3. Stem Cell Biology- stem cells derived from adult, embryonic, or iPS sources hold great promise for providing new insights into the origins of human disease and strategies for treatments. Improvements in derivation and maintenance of stem cell lines are needed for the utility of genetically stable cells capable of realizing these promises. Our lab studies human and rat embryonic stem cells by focusing on culture conditions that assure genetic stability during proliferation and differentiation into neural progenitors. We are exploring the role of the Notch signaling pathway in an effort to understand regulation of apoptotic, autophagic, and necrotic pathways mediated by the microtubule cytoskeleton.

Selected Publications

Nagaoka SI, Hodges CA, Albertini DF, Hunt, PA. Oocyte-Specific Differences in Cell-Cycle Control Create an Innate Susceptibility to Meiotic Errors. Curr Biol. 2011 Apr 13.

McLaughlin M, Bromfield JJ, Albertini DF, Telfer EE. Activin promotes follicular integrity and oogenesis in cultured pre-antral bovine follicles. Mol Hum Reprod. 2010 Sep;16(9):644-53.

McGinnis LK, Albertini DF. Dynamics of protein phosphorylation during meiotic maturation. J Assist Reprod Genet. 2010 Apr;27(4):169-82.

Hutt KJ, Shi Z, Petroff BK, Albertini DF. The environmental toxicant 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin disturbs the establishment and maintenance of

cell polarity in preimplantation rat embryos. Biol Reprod. 2010 May;82(5):914-20.

Barrett SL, Albertini DF. Cumulus cell contact during oocyte maturation in mice regulates meiotic spindle positioning and enhances developmental competence.J Assist Reprod Genet. 2010 Jan;27(1):29-39.

Coticchio G, Bromfield JJ, Sciajno R, Gambardella A, Scaravelli G, Borini A, Albertini DF. Vitrification may increase the rate of chromosome misalignment in the metaphase II spindle of human mature oocytes. Reprod Biomed Online. 2009;19 Suppl 3:29-34.

Bromfield JJ, Coticchio G, Hutt K, Sciajno R, Borini A, Albertini DF. Meiotic spindle dynamics in human oocytes following slow-cooling cryopreservation. Hum Reprod. 2009 Sep;24(9):2114-23.

Coticchio G, Sciajno R, Hutt K, Bromfield J, Borini A, Albertini DF. Comparative analysis of the metaphase II spindle of human oocytes through polarized light and high-performance confocal microscopy. Fertil Steril. 2010 Apr;93(6):2056-64.

Rodrigues P, Limback D, McGinnis LK, Plancha CE, Albertini DF. Multiple mechanisms of germ cell loss in the perinatal mouse ovary. Reproduction. 2009 Apr;137(4):709-20.

McGinnis LK, Kinsey WH, Albertini DF. Functions of Fyn kinase in the completion of meiosis in mouse oocytes. Dev Biol. 2009 Mar 15;327(2):280-7.

Rodrigues P, Limback D, McGinnis LK, Plancha CE, Albertini DF. Oogenesis: Prospects and challenges for the future. J Cell Physiol. 2008 Aug;216(2):355-65.

Bromfield J, Messamore W, Albertini DF. Epigenetic regulation during mammalian oogenesis. Reprod Fertil Dev. 2008;20(1):74-80.

Last modified: Nov 30, 2012

David F. Albertini, PhD


David F. Albertini, PhD
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics