|Center for Genomic Regulation|
PRBB, Centre for Genomic Regulation, Fifth Floor, Room, 571.04 C/Dr. Aiguader, 88 Barcelona
+34933160219/ Ext: 1219
Background and previous research experience
I previously worked on the regulation of odorant receptor gene choice using zebrafish as a model organism. I focused on the mechanisms which ensure expression of only one odorant receptor in a single olfactory sensory neuron. Specifically, I was interested in the specific period during which the singularity of odorant receptor gene expression is established. In order to understand these mechanisms I made use of transgenic approaches such as BAC transgenesis and short promoter transgenesis and confocal imaging.
Main areas of interest
Sensory Neurobiology, Behavioral Neuroscience
Our lab has previously established that the chemotactic behavior of Drosophila larva relies on an odor-driven alternation between behavioral events including runs, stops, lateral head casts and subsequent turns (Gomez-Marin et al., 2011). Moreover, by using Gal4 lines from Rubin collectiondeveloped at Janelia Farm, our lab has shown that inactivating labeled neurons in some of these lines by expressing tetanus toxin light chain (TNT) results in defects in these chemotactic behaviors (see Larval Olympiad). Using previously identified candidate lines, my aim in this project is to identify and functionally characterize the subsets of neurons in the larval brain that are involved in the chemotactic behavior of Drosophila larva . For this purpose, I will combine functional imaging (calcium imaging), gain of function techniques (TRPA and ChR2) and our well established behavioral assays together with molecular techniques that will enable me to label and manipulate only a few targeted neurons.