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2019 Predoctoral Researchers


Tatiana Gaitan Escudero

University of Antioquia

Tatiana Gaitan Escudero’s interest in science started with a single cell. She saw a video of a cell dividing into multiple cells in perfect synchrony until they developed into a whole frog embryo. She called it the most beautiful thing she’d ever seen, and decided on that day to dedicate her career to studying that indescribable beauty.

Gaitan Escudero first heard about the Graduate School of the Stowers Institute in 2017, when Graduate School Faculty and Investigator Robb Krumlauf, Ph.D., spoke at the IX Latin American Society of Development Biology Meeting in Medellin, Colombia. She came to the Institute that year as a Stowers Summer Scholar to work in the lab of Graduate School Faculty and Investigator Tatjana Piotrowski.

After that two-month experience, Gaitan Escudero worked for Piotrowski as a lab technician. She worked on the validation of datasets the lab was publishing, and also carried out her own research project on defining the roles of BMP signaling during development and regeneration of hair cells.

Choosing the Graduate School for her Ph.D. was the obvious choice – not just because of her prior experience at Stowers and familiarity with the education she knows she’ll receive, but also because she enjoys the relaxing lifestyle of Kansas City, and its abundant trees and seasonal landscapes.

While a predoctoral researcher, she hopes to contribute to the understanding of basic biology behind clinic pathologies. In the future, she aspires to set up her own lab, where she can continue to push the understanding of biology forward and mentor others in the same way she has been mentored herself.