Department of Neuroscience
College of Medicine
Department of Neuroscience, Pediatrics and Children's Research Institute
700 Children's Drive
W431 Columbus, OH 43210
Research Interests: Genetic regulation of early neural development, primarily using the African clawed frog, Xenopus, as a model system
Current Research: One project involves the mechanisms by which gene expression is activated during the early development of the anterior neural plate. The anterior neural plate eventually develops into the forebrain and the neural component of the sense organs. Several genes are initially expressed in the anterior neural plate and then are involved in the development of diverse organs of the head, such as the forebrain, anterior pituitary and neural retina.
The El-Hodiri laboratory is characterizing and comparing the promoters of known anterior neural plate genes in order to identify common elements involved in regulation of their expression during early development.
The team is also interested in identifying and characterizing additional genes involved in the early development of the anterior neural plate. In addition, they are studying the genetics of neural retina development, focusing on the genetics of the essential retinal homeobox gene, Rx. The laboratory is interested in the Rx genetic pathway, including identifying genes that are involved in activation of proper spatial and temporal Rx expression. These genes should also play important roles in eye development.
Degree: University of Kansas