Women in tunicate research: Pioneers of the past and their present legacy

Marie L. Nydam, Mary Beth Saffo, Anna Di Gregorio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The search for female scientists who pioneered the research on tunicates is hindered by the tradition of reporting only the first initials of authors' names on scientific publications using only the initials of their first names. While this practice has the theoretical merit of broadening the readership by preventing the possible bias that could be caused by the gender of the author(s) in some of the readers, it rendered the identification of female researchers active in, or before, the first half of the 20th century quite challenging. Sifting through several dozen electronic records, and with the help of references and/or quotes found online, we have stitched together the information that we were able to retrieve on the life of female scientists who authored some of the earliest publications on tunicates, and we have organized them in (approximate) chronological order. We have also compiled brief synopses of the findings of scientists active in the field of tunicate biology in more recent times, and organized them by subdiscipline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere23578
JournalGenesis (United States)
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2023


  • ascidians
  • developmental biology
  • taxonomy
  • tunicates
  • women scientists

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Endocrinology
  • Cell Biology


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