Week 27 - July 6 | Anita Bhattacharyya
#TBT – For 15 years, Waisman Center scientists have used induced pluripotent stem cells—stem cells made from blood and skin samples—to better understand brain development and as a tool for potential treatment and therapies for a broad range of intellectual and developmental disabilities and neurodegenerative diseases. Anita Bhattacharyya, PhD, a Waisman investigator, focuses some of her research on brain development in Down syndrome. One of her projects is to build an atlas that maps the brain development for Down syndrome. #Waisman50years
Image 1: Anita Bhattacharyya, PhD, as a young scientist at the Waisman Center. Image 2: Down syndrome neural progenitor cells which will turn into brain cells/neurons. Image 3: Bhattacharyya, uses a microscope to look at a sample of stem-cell cultures during a tour of her research lab. Bhattacharyya’s lab studies early brain development and developmental disorders characterized by intellectual impairment using a variety of different cell types. (Photo by Jeff Miller/UW-Madison)
Week 28 - July 13 | Discovery Garden
#TBT – For more than 20 years, the Waisman Discovery Garden has provided a fully-accessible outdoor location for events and activities for the Waisman Early Childhood Program and community partners. The 1.5-acre outdoor learning and play space includes adaptive equipment and play structures, an amphitheater, thematic gardens, and a long and winding paved path so that kids of all abilities can access the space. #Waisman50years
Photos: 1 – Early construction, UW Hospital and Clinics can be seen in the background. 2 – An event in the amphitheater. 3 – A WECP outdoor classroom. 4 – Children enjoy an accessible pathway. 5 – Preschool children harvesting vegetables for classroom snacks.
Week 29 - July 20 | Art at Waisman
#TBT The gift of a single piece of art, Amor Perfeito, from a friend from Brazil, inspired the late Harvey A Stevens to start the International Collection of Art by People with Developmental Disabilities. Stevens was a program administrator at the Waisman Center. The collection includes more than 200 pieces from more than 150 artists from all over the world. Artists with intellectual and developmental disabilities, from ages 9 to 76, share their skills, interests, and artistic expression. #Waisman50years
Photos: 1 – Harvey Stevens. 2 – Amor Pereito, by David from Brazil. This was the first piece that inspired the collection. 3. Wisconsin artist Dan Campbell poses in front of one of the many pieces he donated to the collection, Stray Cats. 4. Cityscape by Ejner Mikkelson of Denmark. 5. Untitled by Matthew Boyd-Gravell of England. 6. The Biggest House My Great-Grandfather Ever Built by Madison artist Phil Porter. 7. Raymond Ledingham of Durban, South Africa, at work on a painting.
Week 30 - July 27 | David Gamm
#TBT –David Gamm, MD, PhD, researches degenerative eye diseases using stem cells. In 2007, he discovered that neural progenitor cells can protect vision in animal models of degenerative eye disease. Later, he successfully grew retina cells using stem cells. Gamm hopes to use stem cells to better understand eye development and to create treatments, therapies, and possible cell replacement procedures for vision disorders and retinal diseases such as macular degeneration, Best disease, and retinitis pigmentosa. Gamm, a professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences, also directs the McPherson Eye Research Institute. #Waisman50years
Photos – 1: David Gamm with a stem cell micrograph. 2: A microscopic photograph of early retinal cells (green) and early brain cells (blue). 3: iPS cells were used to create several types of retinal cells in early stage development. 4: Retina organoids mimic the structure and function of the human retina to serve as a platform to study underlying causes of retinal diseases