Shell University Museum of Zoology, copyright University of Cambridge, Jamie Gundry CC

Secrets of the shell

To celebrate International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month the Museum is sharing the stories of 27 inspirational women, alongside the animals they work with the most.


Dr Victoria Sleight

Department of Zoology

Dr Victoria Sleight

I want to understand how molluscs make their beautiful shells. We know that shells are made from a mixture of mainly calcium carbonate and a few proteins, but there are many questions relating to shells that we don’t yet have answers to.

My research aims to discover how calcium carbonate travels to the shell and how molluscs use calcium carbonate to create such an amazing diversity of shell shapes and patterns. My experiments focus on early developmental stages as well as shell repair, and I use a combination of advanced microscopy and state-of-the-art genetic methods to learn about the genes, proteins, cells and tissue dynamics that control shell secretion.”

Find out more about Victoria’s research here.


An equal world is an enabled world.
#IWD2020  #EachforEqual

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