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Drosophila research experts - Neuroscience

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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.

Oren Schuldiner

Oren was trained at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. His PhD, under the instruction of Prof. Nissim Benvenisty, focused on cancer studies in mice. A life-changing talk by Cori Goodman made Oren change course and focus on neurodevelopment using flies as a model during his postdoc with Liqun Luo at Stanford.

In his current laboratory at the Weizmann Institute of Science, he focuses on the cellular and molecular mechanisms that drive neuronal remodeling. Remodeling is an essential and conserved step in nervous system wiring.

Oren is married to another WIS professor, Maya, and they have three boys – Daniel, Noam and Mattan. In his spare time Oren likes to mountain bike, scuba-dive and hike (mostly in the desert).

Having published research in a variety of journals, Oren is a welcome addition to the Fly Editorial Board. If you're not already familiar with his work, seek out the examples below:

  • Rabinovich et al, Cell, 2016: Nitric Oxide as a Switching Mechanism between Axon Degeneration and Regrowth during Developmental Remodeling, DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2015.11.047
  • Alyagor et al, Dev Cell, 2018: Combining Developmental and Perturbation-Seq Uncovers Transcriptional Modules Orchestrating Neuronal Remodeling, DOI: 10.1016/j.devcel.2018.09.013
  • Mayseless et al, Neuron, 2018: Developmental Coordination during Olfactory Circuit Remodeling in Drosophila, DOI: 10.1016/j.neuron.2018.07.050


drosophila neuroscience expert Oren Schuldiner
drosophila expert in neuroscience

Simon G. Sprecher

Simon Sprecher is full Professor at the Department of Biology at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland.

His research group investigates genetic, molecular, cellular mechanisms in the development and function of the nervous system, using predominantly Drosophila as the model system.

Apart from his interest in neurogenetics, Simon is also an enthusiastic SCUBA diver and marine biology advocate. One of his interests lies in developing genetic techniques in unusual marine critters.

Having published research in a variety of journals, Simon is a welcome addition to the Fly Editorial Board. If you're not already familiar with his work, seek out the examples below:

  • Dedicated photoreceptor pathways in Drosophila larvae mediate navigation by processing either spatial or temporal cues. Humberg TH, Bruegger P, Afonso B, Zlatic M, Truman JW, Gershow M, Samuel A, Sprecher SG. Nat Commun. 2018 Mar 28;9(1):1260. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-03520-5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29593252/
  • Multiple neurons encode CrebB dependent appetitive long-term memory in the mushroom body circuit. Widmer YF, Fritsch C, Jungo MM, Almeida S, Egger B, Sprecher SG. Elife. 2018 Oct 22;7:e39196. doi: 10.7554/eLife.39196. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30346271/
  • Single cell transcriptome atlas of the Drosophila larval brain. Brunet Avalos C, Maier GL, Bruggmann R, Sprecher SG. Elife. 2019 Nov 20;8:e50354. doi: 10.7554/eLife.50354. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31746739/

Pelin C. Volkan

Dr. Volkan is an Associate Professor of Biology in Duke University.

Originally from Turkey, she did her PhD at UNC Chapel Hill and her postdoc with Larry Zipursky at UCLA.

Her research focus is to understand how the brain is shaped by development and experience, using the fly olfactory (odor-responsive) system. Her laboratory has identified fundamental molecular programs that govern neuronal diversity, specification and wiring patterns in the olfactory system, as well as how these programs are modified by ecological pressures and experience.

She enjoys martial arts, is a former basketball player, and almost became a movie critic after college, but finally chose molecular biology and genetics instead.

Having published research in a variety of journals, Pelin is a welcome addition to the Fly Editorial Board. If you're not already familiar with her work, seek out the examples below:

  • Chromatin-based reprogramming of a courtship regulator by concurrent pheromone perception and hormone signaling Songhui Zhao, Bryson Deanhardt, George Thomas Barlow, Paulina Guerra Schleske, Anthony M. Rossi, and Pelin C. Volkan, Science Advances,  2020 May 22;6(21):eaba6913.
  • Combinations of DIPs and Dprs control organization of olfactory receptor neuron terminals in Drosophila. Barish S, Nuss S, Strunilin I, Bao S, Mukherjee S, Jones CD, Volkan PC. PloS Genetics, 2018 Aug 13;14(8):e1007560.
  • Chromatin modulatory proteins and olfactory receptor signaling in the refinement and maintenance of fruitless expression in Olfactory Receptor Neurons. Hueston, CE., Olsen, D., Li, Q., Okuwa, S., Peng, B., Wu, J., Volkan, PC. PLoS Biology, 2016 Apr 19;14(4):e1002443. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002443. eCollection 2016 Apr.


drosophila neuroscience expert Pelin Volkan

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Howy Jacobs, Professor of Molecular Biology at Tampere University, Finland. Former Chief Editor of EMBO Reports.
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