Developmental genetics in Drosophila
During development, cells are programmed to generate and interpret spatial information so that every cell within a population knows where it is and what to do as a consequence. Dr. Struhl's work uses genetical and molecular approaches in Drosophila to address the fundamental questions (i) what is spatial information?, (ii) how is it generated?, and (iii) how is it interpreted? His work has led to discoveries about the nature and mode action of spatial determinants controlling cell and body patterns, tissue growth and planar cell polarity. These include (i) the Polycomb and HOX “selectors” in specifying body segments; (ii) the transcription and translation factors Bicoid, Caudal, Hunchback and Nanos in organizing global body pattern, (iii) secreted factors of the Hedgehog, Wnt, and BMP/TGFb superfamilies as the first, intercellular gradient morphogens, (iv) Delta/Notch signaling in cell-fate specification, and (v) the serpentine receptors Frizzled and Starry night, and the atypical cadherins Dachsous and Fat, in planar cell polarity.
- Lawrence, P.A., Casal, J. and Struhl, G.: (2004) Cell interactions and planar polarity in the abdominal epidermis of Drosophila.. Development 131: 4651-4664.
- Wang, W. and Struhl, G.: (2004) DSL ligands must undergo Epsin-mediated endocytosis to activate Notch in Drosophila.. Development 131: 5367-80.
- Casal, J., Lawrence, P.A., and Struhl, G.: (2006) Two separate molecular systems, Dachsous/Fat and Starry night/Frizzled, act independently to confer planar cell polarity. . Development 133: 4561-4572.
- Zecca, M. and Struhl, G.: (2007) Recruitment of cells in the Drosophila wing primordium by a feed-forward circuit of vestigial auto-regulation. . Development 134: 3001-3010.
- Zecca, M. and Struhl, G.: (2010) A feed-forward circuit linking Wingless, Fat-Dachsous signaling and the Warts-Hippo pathway to Drosophila wing growth.. PLoS Biol. 8 (6): e1000386.
- Leiber, T, Kidd, S., and Struhl, G.: (2011) DSL-Notch signaling in the Drosophila brain in response to olfactory stimulation. . Neuron 59: 468-481