Olivier Pourquié, PhD

Olivier Pourquié, PhD

Harvard Medical School
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Olivier Pourquié, PhD

We are interested in the development of the vertebrate musculo-skeletal axis. Using chicken and mouse embryos as model systems, we combine developmental biology and genomic approaches to study patterning and differentiation of the precursors of muscles and vertebrae. While most of this work has been carried out in vivo, we are now developing protocols to recapitulate these early developmental processes in vitro using mouse and human embryonic or reprogrammed stem cells. We are also turning to translational approaches, using our understanding of the early development to produce cells of the muscle and vertebral lineages in vitro from pluripotent cells to study human diseases of the musculo-skeletal axis and for cell therapy approaches.


Olivier Pourquie is Professor in the Department of Genetics at Harvard Medical School and Professor of Pathology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He was the director of the Institute for Genetics and Molecular and Cellular Biology (IGBMC) in France and before that a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in Kansas City. He graduated as an engineer in France and trained with Nicole Le Douarin. He is the Editor in Chief of the journal Development.

Dr. Pourquie authored more than 100 peer-reviewed publications. He is an elected member of the European Molecular Biology Organization and of the Academia Europea. His work on the segmentation clock that controls the periodicity of vertebrae was recognized as one of the milestones in developmental biology of the 20th century by Nature Magazine.

Contact Information