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Drosophila research experts - Development & Disease

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Now's the time for Fly

Fly is the first international peer-reviewed journal to focus on Drosophila research. Having expanded the editorial board to include even more experts in the field of Drosophila from all over the world, Fly is quickly becoming the 'go to' journal for Drosophila research.

To meet more experts joining us on our journey click here.

Grace Boekhoff-Falk

Grace Boekhoff-Falk received her bachelor’s degree from Swarthmore College, where she was mentored by Scott Gilbert. Boekhoff-Falk obtained her Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

In her dissertation work with Michael Hoffmann, she investigated BMP signaling across embryonic germ layers in Drosophila.

Her postdoctoral work with Sean Carroll included both studies of neural development in Drosophila and investigations into the evolutionary origins of animal appendages.

Boekhoff-Falk joined the faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1996 where she is an associate professor of Cell and Regenerative Biology. Her current research is focused on regeneration in the adult Drosophila brain.

Three Selected Publications

drosophila expert in development

Vijay Raghavan

(Vijay) Vijay Raghavan is Emeritus Professor at the National Centre for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bangalore. His research group currently focuses on the integrated, sequential development of sensory and locomotory organs of the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster, in particular muscles, nerves, neural circuits and the behaviours that they enable.

Vijay is a disastrous player of the flute and loves long-distance running. Both activities are currently deeply surrounded by rust. He promises to attend to both with vigour beginning next Monday.

Three Selected Publications


drosophila expert in development

Ryusuke Niwa

Ryusuke Niwa leads the Physiological Dynamics research group in the Life Science Center for Survival Dynamics, Tsukuba Advanced Research Alliance, University of Tsukuba, Japan.

The major aim of his laboratory is to elucidate the neuroendocrine system and interorgan communication mechanism to regulate development and physiology.

Since 2008 when he started his own laboratory, he has mainly using Drosophila and studied ecdysone biosynthesis, germline stem cell proliferation, energy homeostasis, reproductive dormancy, host-parasitoid wasp interaction, and chemical biology of pesticides.

He is a person who named the following 5 Drosophila genes, including slingshotneverlandnoppera-boouija board, and séance.

Three Selected Publications

Estee Kurant

Estee Kurant leads a research group at the University of Haifa, Israel. She was born in Russia (Soviet Union), in the Siberian city of Tomsk. Following her parents' career path, she initially studied medicine at the Tomsk Medical School, were she fell in love with Cell Biology and Genetics. In 1990 she moved to Israel and switched from medical studies to Biology at the Technion, te Israel Institute of Technology. Since her BSc student project she has worked with flies.

Estee's group focuses on molecular and cellular mechanisms of cell clearance during development and in adults. Her interests comprise the role of glial phagocytosis in formation and aging of the nervous system including fly models of neurodegenerative diseases. 

Estee loves dancing and skiing, and very much enjoys rock music, opera and ballet.

Three Selected Publications

Benny Shilo

Benny Shilo received his BSc and PhD from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, with Giora Simchen as supervisor of his PhD on cell-cycle initiation in yeast.

As a postdoc at MIT, he worked with Robert A. Weinberg, on the identification and isolation of mouse and human tumor-causing genes. Towards the end of his postdoc, he came up with the idea of looking for proto-oncogene homologues in genetically accessible invertebrate models, identifying several of them in Drosophila, including ras, src and abl.

Since setting up his own lab at the Weizmann Institute in 1981, he has pursued genetic approaches to unravel the function of these genes in Drosophila, notably the EGF receptor pathway. He is also interested in the interface between cell biology and the execution of developmental decisions, and has embarked on a collaboration with Naama Barkai to explore new ways to study the generation and robustness of morphogen gradients.

Three Selected Publications

Mariana Wolfner

Mariana Federica Wolfner is Distinguished Professor of Molecular Biology and Genetics at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. 

Her research interests centre around sex-specific differences and their reproductive consequences, investigating these by a combination of approaches including genetics, molecular biology, and imaging. In one project area, she and her lab dissect the functions and evolution of seminal proteins, mostly in Drosophila but also in disease-vector mosquitoes. In a second area, they identify the conserved triggers and molecular changes that activate eggs to develop, once fertilized. 

Mariana is a crossword-puzzle fiend, loves outrageous puns and unusual museums, and finds restoration by being outdoors in nature.

Three Selected Publications


Peter Dearden

Peter Dearden is at the University of Otago, New Zealand. He completed his PhD in London, UK, was a postdoc with Michael Akam in Cambridge and then began his own lab in New Zealand in 2002.

He is interested in Evolution and Development, how gene regulatory networks evolve, the molecular mechanisms of plasticity and the evolution of eusociality.

He has been viciously bitten by Zephr, one of only 204 Kākāpō (the world’s rarest parrot) left in the world.

Three Selected Publications

Research Impact eBook

What kind of impact are you seeking for your research? Boost the visibility of your research paper using this free eBook.
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Meet the Editor in Chief

Howy Jacobs, Professor of Molecular Biology at Tampere University, Finland. Former Chief Editor of EMBO Reports.
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Now's the time for Fly

Fly strives to be the 'go to' journal for the Drosophila community. Find out how your work can make an impact with Fly.
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