The travel budget is planned so that the five postdocs can spend one month a year in another network lab. Key techniques, including fly genetics, in invertebrate and vertebrate embryos are not well understood. We intend cloning and analysis of gene expression, cell lineage tracing, RNA/DNA to analyse the mechanisms involved in determining fate of neural cells, injection and tissue grafting are the expertise of member labs. placodes, neural crest and non-neural ectoderm.
This analysis will involve
i) generating detailed fate maps of this region of the zebra fish and chick gastula; ii) assessing the spatial expression patterns of a number of key regulatory genes relative to the forming lateral neural plate boundary in normal and experimental embryos in which tissue has been exchanged between neural and non neural ectoderm.
iii) functional analysis of the zebra fish GATA3 gene and the likely Drosophila homologue, pannier, in the regulation of neural plate formation and the identification of proteins which interact with pannier in the repression of achaete-scute gene expression. Using several species (ie Drosophila, zebra fish and chicks) gives the benefit of technical possibilities that each system allows, including genetics, tissue grafting and RNA/DNA injections into the fertilised egg.
Such an interdisciplinary approach strengthens the conclusion that the mechanisms we are examining are universal.
Funding SchemeNET - Research network contracts
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