When a maggot is transformed into a fly there is a dramatic deconstruction of the body and nervous system that is followed by a period of reconstruction. Our lab exploits the extreme biology of Drosophila metamorphosis to uncover novel cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurodevelopment. We are interested how the anatomy and function of lineally related neurons are acquired and how the shape of individual neurons can be sculpted at both the cellular and subcellular level. Studying flies can help us identify both evolutionary conserved mechanisms (homologies) and novel convergent ways of solving the same problem (analogies). Together these help inform us about design principles of nervous systems.
I have an MRC DTP PhD studentship available: 'Establishing the earthworm as a new invertebrate model for regeneration and neurogenesis research' (project 56.2, Theme 2).
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