Drosophila melanogaster 

"black bellied dew lover"



We use the visual system of Drosophila to understand the development of the organization of the brain and assemble and maintenance of neural circuits. The eye and the optic lobe form the Drosophila visual system. The compound eye is composed of 800 units called ommatidia. These units include eight different photoreceptor neurons (R1–R8) and supporting cells. The photoreceptor neurons send their axons into the optic lobes. Thus, visual information travels from the retina to the four optic lobe ganglia: lamina, medulla, lobula, and lobula plate. The optic lobe is an exciting model to uncover novel mechanisms regulating nervous system development. Some conserved biological processes that we are studying are axon growth and guidance, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), cell migration, and boundary formation.

See more info on the research lines section.