After a bachelor’s degree from Peking University, Qiyan Mao pursued her PhD on zebrafish developmental biology in the group of Robert Ho at the University of Chicago.
Fascinated by the mechanochemical regulation of tissue polarity, she joined the group of Thomas Lecuit at the IBDM as a postdoc in 2014. Here she co-discovered a novel cell surface receptor complex instructing self-propagating planar polarity in Drosophila.
During this time, she had two children! After her second maternity leave, she joined the group of Frank Schnorrer at the IBDM as a postdoc in 2019 to spearhead a new research axis of human muscle development.
Here she uncovered an unexpected self-organisation in human iPSC-derived skeletal muscles mediated by tension-controlled feedback.
She subsequently obtained an AFM-Téléthon postdoc fellowship in 2022 and a CNRS position in 2023.
As a permanent researcher, she aims to establish the human muscle as a new morphogenetic paradigm organized by molecular, cell, and tissue mechanics.