The Marcelle Group is interested in understanding how functional skeletal muscle arises from a group of unspecialised mesodermal cells. They do this by studying chick and mouse embryos during the first few days of development.

This period is crucial to development because the fate of individual cells are decided, extensive cell migration occurs and tightly regulated cell division takes place. 

The focus of the group is to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms at play during this complex process. 


The group has three main aims with their research:

  • Observe the cellular events that take place during muscle formation
  • Understand the molecular mechanisms underlying muscle fusion
  • Identify gene networks implicated in the maintenance and differentiation of muscle stem cells.


Marcelle group photos
  • How the process of morphogenesis of skeletal muscles is regulated at a cellular and molecular level
  • Identifying putative candidate genes important in fusion
  • Defining a core gene network governing “stem-cellness” in muscle.

Featured Publications

More Publications

Published In

Hirst CE, Marcelle C.

The avian embryo as a model system for skeletal myogenesis.

Results Probl Cell Differ. 2015;56:99-122. doi: 10.1007/978-3-662-44608-9_5.

Sieiro-Mosti D, De La Celle M, Pele M, Marcelle C.

A dynamic analysis of muscle fusion in the chick embryo.

Development. 2014 Sep;141(18):3605-11. doi: 10.1242/dev.114546.

Serralbo O, Marcelle C.

Migrating cells mediate long-range WNT signaling.

Development. 2014 May;141(10):2057-63. doi: 10.1242/dev.107656.

Ruparelia AA, Simkin JE, Salgado D, Newgreen DF, Martins GG, Bryson-Richardson RJ.

The quail anatomy portal.

Database (Oxford). 2014 Apr 7;2014(0):bau028. doi: 10.1093/database/bau028. Print 2014.

Figeac N, Serralbo O, Marcelle C, PS Zammit.

ErbB3 binding protein-1 (Ebp1) controls proliferation and myogenic differentiation of muscle stem cells.

Dev Biol. 2014 Feb 1;386(1):135-51. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2013.11.017. Epub 2013 Nov 22.

Bladen CL, Thompson R, Jackson JM, Garland C, Wegel C, Ambrosini A, Pisano P, Walter MC, Schreiber O, Lusakowska A, Jedrzejowska M, Kostera-Pruszczyk A, van der Pol L, Wadman RI, Gredal O, Karaduman A, Topaloglu H, Yilmaz O, Matyushenko V, Rasic VM, Kosac A, Karcagi V, Garami M, Herczegfalvi A, Monges S, Moresco A, Chertkoff L, Chamova T, Guergueltcheva V, Butoianu N, Craiu D, Korngut L, Campbell C, Haberlova J, Strenkova J, Alejandro M, Jimenez A, Ortiz GG, Enriquez GV, Rodrigues M, Roxburgh R, Dawkins H, Youngs L, Lahdetie J, Angelkova N, Saugier-Veber P, Cuisset JM, Bloetzer C, Jeannet PY, Klein A, Nascimento A, Tizzano E, Salgado D, Mercuri E, Sejersen T, Kirschner J, Rafferty K, Straub V, Bushby K, Verschuuren J, Beroud C, Lochmüller H.

Mapping the differences in care for 5,000 spinal muscular atrophy patients, a survey of 24 national registries in North America, Australasia and Europe.

J Neurol. 2014 Jan;261(1):152-63. doi: 10.1007/s00415-013-7154-1. Epub 2013 Oct 27.

Rios AC, Serralbo O, Salgado D, Marcelle C.

Neural crest regulates myogenesis through the transient activation of Notch.

Nature. 2011 May 26;473(7348):532-5. doi: 10.1038/nature09970. Epub 2011 May 15.

Relaix F, Marcelle C.

Muscle stem cells.

Current Opinion in Cell Biology 2009, 21:748–753

Rios AC, Marcelle C.

Head muscles: aliens who came in from the cold?

Dev Cell. 2009 Jun;16(6):779-80. doi: 10.1016/j.devcel.2009.06.004.

Gros J, Serralbo O, Marcelle C.

Wnt11 acts as a directional cue to organize the elongation of early muscle fibers.

Nature. 2009 Jan 29;457(7229):589-93. doi: 10.1038/nature07564. Epub 2008 Nov 5.

Manceau M, Savage K, Gros J, Thomé V, McPherron A, Paterson B, Marcelle C.

Myostatin promotes the terminal differentiation of embryonic muscle progenitors.

Genes Dev. 2008 Mar 1;22(5):668-81. doi: 10.1101/gad.454408.

Gros J, Manceau M, Thomé V, Marcelle C.

A Common Somitic Origin for Embryonic Muscle Progenitors and Satellite cells.

Nature. 2005 Jun 16;435(7044):954-8. Epub 2005 Apr 20.

Gros J, Scaal M, Marcelle C.

A two step mechanism for myotome formation in chick.

Dev Cell. 2004 Jun;6(6):875-82.

Garcia-Castro M, Marcelle C, Bronner-Fraser M.

Ectodermal Wnt Function As a Neural Crest Inducer.

Science. 2002 Aug 2;297(5582):848-51.