B.Sc. - Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge.
Ph.D. - Wellcome/CRC Institute, University of Cambridge.
Research Staff Member. In the lab of Dr. Eric Wieschaus, Princeton University, USA, 2000-2005.
Helen Hay Whitney Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of Dr. Eric Wieschaus, Princeton University, USA, 1997-2000.
Ph.D., Genetics, Wellcome/CRC Institute, University of Cambridge, UK. Thesis advisor: Dr. Michael Akam. 1992-97.
B.Sc.(Hons.) Natural Sciences (Part II Genetics), Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge, UK, 1987-1990.
Our lab explores themes of developmental genetics and evolutionary biology using insects as our model system. We study the evolution of processes that transform the fertilized egg into a fully formed organism and the interactions between insect cells and their associated bacteria and parasites.
Current projects fall into three areas:
- Comparison of embryonic development between Drosophila melanogaster and other insects analyzing evolution of key genetic pathways. Errors in equivalent pathways in humans can lead to congenital abnormalities, so this project has medical relevance.
- Exploring relationships between fly embryos and the Wolbachia bacteria that live inside their cells. Wolbachia are found in most insects, are involved in disease pathogenesis and are used as pest control for vectors of Dengue fever and malaria. These projects therefore connect to environmental biology and public health.
- Our interest in flies, mosquitoes and their associated microbes has also led to a collaborative project (with the Povelones labs at U Penn and Villanova) investigating Crithidia as an emerging model system to study Trypanosome parasites that cause a variety of diseases and are carried by mosquitoes.
Students in our lab are also welcome to develop their own research projects. Recent examples include DNA barcoding of marine invertebrates, fly models of rare diseases and Wolbachia in the developing nervous system. Some projects involve working with flies directly but there are many options that don’t require students to handle the adult flies. Our lab uses a wide variety of techniques from molecular biology, cell biology, histo-chemistry and microscopy to cell culture.
- Biology Department's Info Hub - find out about Biology news, opportunities and more!
- Genetics Textbook! Many years in the making with wonderful colleagues Kate Heston, Iruka Okeke and Philip Meneely and the input of our Bio200 students, our Genetics textbook is published.
- Interview in International Innovation
Interview & Article about My Work (International Innovation is the leading global dissemination resource for the wider scientific, technology and research communities, More information at www.researchmedia.eu)
- KINSC Cell & Molec. Imaging
Working with Eric Arnold ('12), Jen Schwartz ('11), Jill Geratowski ('11) and Raul Hernandez ('11) we have developed a website for our microscopy equipment