David Parichy

Pratt-Ivy Foundation Distinguished Professor of Morphogenesis
314 PLSB
(434) 982-6162


• B.A., Reed College, 1991

• Ph.D., Population Biology, University of California at Davis, 1997

• Postdoctoral, Washington University Medical School, 1997–2000


Research Interests

Our research focuses on developmental–genetic mechanisms of pattern formation, long-distance cellular communication, and stem cell biology. Additional efforts address the evolution of gene regulatory networks and cell behaviors underlying the diversification of adult morphology. We primarily use the experimentally tractable zebrafish and its relatives, as well as other teleosts and amphibians. Of particular interest to us are post-embryonic stem cells, glia, and pigment cells that are derived from the embryonic neural crest and function in generating the adult peripheral nervous system and pigment pattern. Additional work investigates patterning and morphogenesis of skin, scales, and other traits. The group uses many approaches including super-resolution time-lapse imaging, single cell transcriptomics, quantitative genetic analysis, as well as targeted (CRISPR/Cas9) mutagenesis, transgenesis and forward genetic screens. These efforts are facilitated by lab-dedicated infrastructure including multiple laser confocal microscopes (including multiphoton and super-resolution), Illumina sequencing and single cell transcriptomics platforms, and specialized fish facilities. We have a highly supportive and inclusive group of trainees and staff that values collaboration at all levels. We welcome enquiries from propsective postdoctoral scholars, graduate students and undergraduate researchers. For more information please see our website.



Representative Publications

  • Gur D, Bain E, Johnson K, Aman AJ, Pasoili A, Flynn JD, Allen MC, Deheyn DD, Oron D, Levkowitz G, Lee JC, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Parichy DM. 2020. In situ differentiation of iridophore crystallotypes underlies zebrafish stripe patterning. Nature Communications 11:6391.

  • McCluskey BM, Uji S, Mancusi JL, Postlethwait JH, Parichy DM. 2021. A complex genetic architecture in zebrafish relatives Danio quagga and D. kyathit underlies development of stripes and spots. PLoS Genetics 17:e1009364.

  • Eom DS, Patterson LB, Bostic RR, Parichy DM. 2021. Immunoglobulin superfamily receptor Junctional adhesion molecule 3 (Jam3) requirement for melanophore survival and patterning during formation of zebrafish stripes. Developmental Biology 476:314–327.

  • Lewis VM, Saunders LM, Larson TA, Bain EJ, Sturiale SL, Gur D, Chowdhury S, Flynn JD, Allen MC, Deheyn DD, Lee JC, Simon JA, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Raible DW, Parichy DM. Fate plasticity and reprogramming in genetically distinct populations of Danio leucophores. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1901021116.
  • Saunders LM, Mishra AK, Aman AJ, Lewis VM, Toomey MB, Packer JS, Qiu X, McFaline-Figueroa JL, Corbo JC, Trapnell C*, Parichy DM*. Thyroid hormone regulates distinct paths to maturation in pigment cell lineages. eLife 8:e45181
  • Patterson LB, Parichy DM. 2019. Zebrafish pigment pattern formation: insights into the development and evolution of adult form. Annual Review of Genetics 53:505–530
  • Spiewak JE, Bain EJ, Liu J, Kou K, Sturiale SL, Patterson LB, Diba P§, Eisen JS, Braasch I, Ganz J, Parichy DM. 2018. Evolution of endothelin signaling and diversification of adult pigment pattern in Danio fishes. PLoS Genetics 14:e1007538.
  • Aman AJ, Fulbright AN, Parichy DM. 2018. Wnt/β-catenin regulates an ancient signaling network during zebrafish scale development. eLife 10.7554/eLife.37001
  • Eom DS, Parichy DM. 2017. A macrophage relay for long distance signaling during post-embryonic tissue remodeling. Science 355:1317–1320. PMC5836293.
  • Patterson LB, Bain EJ, Parichy DM. 2014. Pigment cell interactions and differential xanthophore recruitment underlying zebrafish stripe reiteration and Danio pattern evolution. Nature Communications 5:6299. PMC4224114
  • McMenamin SK, Bain EJ, McCann AE, Patterson LB, Eom DS, Waller ZP§, Hamill JC§, Kuhlman JA, Eisen JS, Parichy DM. 2014. Thyroid hormone-dependent adult pigment cell lineage and pattern in zebrafish. Science 345:1358–1361.
  • Patterson LB, Parichy DM. 2013. Interactions with iridophores and the tissue environment required for patterning melanophores and xanthophores during zebrafish adult pigment stripe formation. PLoS Genetics 9:e1003561.
  • Parichy DM, Elizondo MR, Mills MG, Gordon TN, Engeszer RE. 2009. Normal table of post-embryonic zebrafish development: staging by externally visible anatomy of the living fish. Developmental Dynamics 238:2975–3015.