Welcome to the Lab

The Neuroskeletal Biology Laboratory (NSBL) was founded in 2016 and is part of the Musculoskeletal Research Center (MRC) and Division of Bone and Mineral Diseases at Washington University. The laboratory consists of a mix of technicians, trainees/fellows, and undergraduate researchers. For more information about our members and their accomplishments, please see the people, awards, and antics pages. You can also find us on twitter.

Our Research

Our laboratory synthesizes concepts from cell biology, physiology, and bioengineering to study the relationships between the nervous system and the skeleton. We have a directed interest in understanding how neural signals contribute to skeletal homeostasis, and how perturbations to this system contribute to bone loss, impaired healing, and skeletal pain. For more information about our work, see our projects and publications.

Recent Events

Neuroskeletal Effects of Chronic Bioelectric Nerve Stimulation in Health and Diabetes (Links to an external site)

Neuroskeletal Effects of Chronic Bioelectric Nerve Stimulation in Health and Diabetes
Background/Aims: Bioelectric nerve stimulation (eStim) is an emerging clinical paradigm that can promote nerve regeneration after trauma, including within the context of diabetes. However, its ability to prevent the onset of diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) has not yet been evaluated. Beyond the nerve itself, DPN has emerged as a potential contributor to sarcopenia and bone disease; […]

A neuroskeletal atlas: spatial mapping and contextualization of axon subtypes innervating the long bones of C3H and B6 mice (Links to an external site)

A neuroskeletal atlas: spatial mapping and contextualization of axon subtypes innervating the long bones of C3H and B6 mice
Nerves in bone play well‐established roles in pain and vasoregulation and have been associated with progression of skeletal disorders including osteoporosis, fracture, arthritis and tumor metastasis. However, isolation of the region‐specific mechanisms underlying these relationships is limited by our lack of quantitative methods for neuroskeletal analysis and precise maps of skeletal innervation. To overcome these […]

Microneedles for ultrasensitive biomarker detection (Links to an external site)

Microneedles for ultrasensitive biomarker detection
The detection and quantification of protein biomarkers in interstitial fluid is hampered by challenges in its sampling and analysis. Here we report the use of a microneedle patch for fast in vivo sampling and on-needle quantification of target protein biomarkers in interstitial fluid. We used plasmonic fluor—an ultrabright fluorescent label—to improve the limit of detection […]

Immunostaining of Skeletal Tissues (Links to an external site)

Immunostaining of Skeletal Tissues
Immunostaining is the process of identifying proteins in tissue sections by incubating the sample with antibodies specific to the protein of interest, then visualizing the bound antibody using a chromogen (immunohistochemistry or IHC) or fluorescence (immunofluorescence or IF). Unlike in situ hybridization, which identifies gene transcripts in cells, immunostaining identifies the products themselves and provides […]

Postdoc Dr. Mohamed Hassan awarded RLM fellowship (Links to an external site)

Postdoc Dr. Mohamed Hassan awarded RLM fellowship
Dr. Hassan was recently selected as the 2020 recipient of the Rita Levi-Montalcini Postdoctoral Fellowship in Regenerative Medicine by the Washington University Center of Regenerative Medicine. Dr. Hassan is a dentist-scientist with training in Orthodontics and will join the lab in the Summer of 2021 to begin his work. Congratulations, Mohamed!

JBMR Nerves in Bone review ranked #3 in yearly downloads (Links to an external site)

JBMR Nerves in Bone review ranked #3 in yearly downloads
Congratulations to postdoctoral fellow Dr. Jennifer Brazill and her co-authors on publishing the 3rd most downloaded paper from JBMR over the past year – “Nerves in Bone: Evolving Concepts in Pain and Anabolism”.  This speaks to the high quality of the article and the emerging interest in the field. Great work!

Xiao Zhang wins two research awards for work on marrow fat (Links to an external site)

Xiao Zhang wins two research awards for work on marrow fat
Xiao Zhang won two of the prestigious awards for research at the recent BMA2020 meeting. After an independent committee review, his oral presentation “Fat in a fatless mouse: a novel origin of maladapted bone marrow adipocytes with age and disease” won 1st place in the best abstract category. In addition, his 2nd abstract “Neural contributions […]

Big happenings at the BMA2020 meeting (Links to an external site)

Big happenings at the BMA2020 meeting
The 6th Annual Meeting of the Bone Marrow Adiposity Society (BMA2020), co-organized by our very own Dr. Scheller, was quite the event. With 55 abstracts, 11 invited speakers, 205 attendees, and even a live trivia event hosted by American Ninja Warrior’s Alex Weber – it was one for the books. Congratulations to Dr. Scheller on […]

Jobs and Opportunities

Check out our Jobs and Projects pages for more information.