The Gamberi Research Group
Cell And Organismal Polarity via Regulated mRNA Expression
We have a long-standing interest in how cells and organisms organize in space. For example, the Drosophila oocyte has established polarity axes already before fertilization, due to the asymmetrical accumulation of translationally-silent mRNAs and cellular components. At fertilization these mRNA are translated into proteins that initiate embryonic patterning. Multiple cell types rely on asymmetry to perform their functions, including neurons and epithelia and common factors, notably RNA-binding proteins, appear to be involved in establishing and maintaining cellular/organismal polarity. By means of comparative studies and study the functions of conserved regulators of polarity in tissue of germline (e.g., oocytes) and somatic (e.g., renal/Malpighian tubule) origins to identify general and tissue-specific polarization patterns.