Investigation of the functions of the mammalian homologues of Drosophila genes

The group has also participated in another project in the area of functional genomics. with Hugh Campbell (Research School of Biological Sciences) and the Gene Targeting Laboratory. In this work, the functions of the mammalian homologues of two interesting genes, flightless and small optic lobes, with functions in development and behaviour in the fruit fly Drosophila are being investigated by gene targeting in mice. Investigations to date have shown a function for mammalian flightless in early embryonic development, remarkably analogous to its role in Drosophila. This cross-organism approach uses information gained from studies with the simpler fruit fly to better understand development and brain function in mammals.