Room: G 304A, Biological Sciences
Phone: (780) 492-3546
Fax: (780) 492-9234
The role of Wee1 in preventing Mitotic Catastrophe:
If a cell tries to divide before DNA replication is completed, chromosome segregation defects trigger a lethal response called “mitotic catastrophe” that prevents aneuploid cells from surviving and becoming cancer. We study the mechanisms by which Wee1 kinases prevent mitotic catastrophe during early Drosophila development, as an experimental model for this essential regulatory mechanism. My students and other research colleagues use transgenic expression of Wee1 and Cdk1 (its target), as well as wee1 mutants made by our laboratory for this research. Wee1 and its co-factors are also promising new drug targets for treating checkpoint-compromised cancer cells, adding further biomedical relevance to this project.
Synchronously dividing Drosophila nuclei:
Myt1 and Male Germline Development:
Spermatocytes are very large meiotic cells that arrest in G2 phase for several days before undergoing cell division (M1 and MII), making it easy to visualize cell structures. We are studying the role of a cell cycle regulatory kinase called Myt1 in organizing cytoplasmic structures and coordinating their behavior with cell cycle progression, using fluorescent reporter genes and myt1 mutants made by our laboratory. Besides implications for treatment of human male infertility, the project also relates to outstanding questions about how cell cycle progression is coordinated with cell growth and differentiation, during development.
Drosophila testes: stem cells in green, germline cells in red.
Last Modified:2011-02-16 |