I am interested in the genes that regulate the development
of hypercephaly in stalk-eyed flies and to find a molecular mechanism
for sexual selection. Since the stalk-eyed fly is not a classic "model"
organism there is not a large amount of information on stalk-eyed fly
genetics. As a result I am developing a transgenic protocol for stalk-eyed
flies. Currently I have developed a robust injection protocol and am
testing out different transposonable elements (piggybac, minos,
hermes and mariner) as vectors for inserting genes.
In addition I am looking at basic embryology of stalk-eyed
flies am also using histological techniques to study whether hypercephaly
is caused by an increase in cell size or an increase in cell number.