gonads of the fruitfly Drosophila are used as a model
system to study the genetic mechanisms that regulate the behavior
of cells during morphogenesis of tissues and organs.
behavior of individual cells is the driving force behind morphogenesis.
Cell shape, cell motility and cell-cell interactions, which can
undergo rapid changes during development, determine the shape
and organization of tissues and organs. What are the molecules
that control cell shape and cell movements? To find and analyze
factors that are involved in morphogenesis my laboratory uses
ovarian development in Drosophila as a model system. The
ovary of Drosophila consists of a regular array of tubes
in which the eggs mature, and gene mutations that disturb the
formation of the egg tubes cause sterility. Our work focuses
on sterile mutations that specifically disrupt morphogenetic
movements during ovarian development and oogenesis. We analyze
the function of several morphogenetic regulators, including transcription
factors and adhesion molecules of the cadherin family at the
genetic and molecular level.
Jam, a large MAF transcription factor controls gonad morphogenesis
- Genetic analysis
of cadherin-based adhesion systems
- Ovarian morphogenesis