The Rowland Junior Fellows are selected to perform independent experimental research for five years, with full institutional support and access to the Institute's outstanding technical and scientific resources. We appoint on average two new Rowland Junior Fellows per year. Candidates in all the natural sciences (physics, chemistry, biology,...) as well as in engineering will be considered, with special attention given to interdisciplinary work and to the development of new experimental methods.
SPOTLIGHT ON: RJF Chris Richards.
My lab seeks to understand the physiological basis for how limbs move to power locomotion. Specifically, we focus on three fundamental limb properties: 1. muscle function (intrinsic speed and strength), 2. skeletal structure and 3. external limb morphology. Although traditional approaches address these properties in isolation of one another, they are all interdependent. For example over the course of evolution, if an animal transitions from water to land, we expect that the muscle properties must also change in concert with morphological shifts. Furthermore, we expect that the internal skeletal structure (e.g. the length of bones or bony processes) would also adapt. Hence, we attempt to understand how muscle properties, limb internal anatomy and external anatomy are 'tuned' to one another to confer effective locomotion. We address our questions using frogs as model systems.