Current Research

I am by education and training a developmental geneticist. I have been very much interested in identifying how early development is governed by the interplay of genes and the environment. My organism of choice has always been Drosophila melanogaster.

Currently I am employing a Drosophila model of Alzheimer’s Disease to investigate the interactions between aging and Alzheimer’s and how dietary interventions might ameliorate the disease phenotype.

Studies are also underway to identify the role that mating plays in delaying the aging process in Drosophila melanogaster.

Another current area of research is identifying and establishing ovarian and malpighian tubule derived stem cells so that they can be utilized to identify trophic factors and cell cell interactions that drive determination and differentiation.

Areas of Previous Research

  • Genetic and developmental analysis of tumorous head, a third chromosome homeotic mutant of Drosophila melanogaster. Development of an EMS screen for the third chromosome which produced a tumorous head allele.
  • Development of an in vitro assay to identify teratogens utilizing Drosophila embryonic cells.
  • Neuronal and muscle development during Drosophila embryogenesis.
  • Use of amniotic fluid and chorionic villi cells to assess environmentally induced heat shock proteins in the fetus.
  • Induction of heat shock proteins and their role in abnormal development.
  • Assessing effect of Electro-magnetic fields (EMF) on Drosophila embryonic development. Investigating the possible connection between telomerase activity and programmed cell death after exposure to EMF.
  • Utilization of P-mediated transformed Drosophila to investigate promoter control and expression of heat shock proteins.
  • Identification of possible relationship between altered programmed cell death pattern in embryos, heat shock protein induction after teratogen-exposure.