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Transcription factors and heterochromatin formation in Drosophila

15th National Programme for the allocation of Research Grants for Life and Matter Sciences

The genome and epigenome

Senior Researcher : Natalia Azpiazu Torres

Research Centre or Institution : Centro de Biología Molecular "Severo Ochoa". CSIC-Universidad Autónoma de Madrid


Transcription factors are proteins capable of binding to DNA which regulate subsidiary gene transcription. This regulation may occur at the epigenetic level, that is, modifying the chromatin state of the DNA regions to which they bind. The main objective of this project is to analyse, using Drosophila melanogaster as a model system, the mode of action of the Homothorax and Eyegone transcription factors at the chromatin level. These are two proteins with a high degree of conservation in the animal kingdom whose mutations cause various types of vertebrate cancers. Understanding how they operate during normal development of the organism will bring us closer to understanding the mechanisms by which the disease develops.

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