Principal Investigator: Xavier Franch Principal Investigator: Xavier Franch


Research lines Research lines

Evolution along Earth history has developed a great number of different organisms with a consequent incredibly variety of forms and sizes. One of the big questions in Biology is to understand which genes and what kind of changes in their sequences are responsible for the evolution of the mentioned morphological diversity. Using Drosophila melanogaster and Tribolium castaneum as organism models, the aim of our lab is to elucidate the mechanisms that allow the formation of new morphologies and sizes. We use two different organ models to address these questions: the tracheal system and the imaginal wing disc. In both systems, Wnt signalling plays a crucial role during its respective development controlling morphogenesis and size. For instance, we have found that small changes in Wnt signalling activation result in a different final size of the Drosophila wing.

This could mean that small changes in the domain of activation of a signalling pathway in a tissue could give rise to different organ size along evolution. This effect could be achieved by either acquisition of new regulatory regions of target genes or by changes in the regulation of the activity of the pathway. Therefore, identification of new target genes of the pathway and the comparison of their expression pattern in Drosophila and Tribolium, in trachea and wing disc, will give us information of how this signalling pathway has evolved to control pattern as well as organ size along evolution.

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Principal Investigator Principal Investigator

Current members Current members

Publications since 2011 Publications since 2011

Campbell, K.; Lebreton, G.; Franch-Marro, X.; Casanova, J. 2018. Differential roles of the Drosophila EMT-inducing transcription factors Snail and Serpent in driving primary tumour growth. PLoS Genetics. 14(2):e1007167 doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1007167

Rahman, M.M.;Franch-Marro, X.;Maestro, J.L.;Martin, D.;Casali, A. 2017. Local Juvenile Hormone activity regulates gut homeostasis and tumor growth in adult Drosophila. Scientific Reports . 7:Article number: 11677

Ureña; E.; Chafino, S.; Manjón, C.; Franch-Marro, X.; and Martín, D. 2016. The Occurrence of the Holometabolous Pupal Stage Requires the Interaction between E93, Krüppel-Homolog 1 and Broad-ComplexPLoS Genetics 12(5):e1006020

de Miguel, C.; Linsler, F.; Casanova, J.; Franch-Marro, X. 2016. Genetic basis for the evolution of organ morphogenesis. The case of spalt and cut in development of insect tracheaDevelopment pii: dev.134924

Ureña,E.; Manjón, C.; Franch-Marro, X.; and Martín, D. 2014. Transcription factor E93 specifies adult metamorphosis in hemimetabolous and holometabolous insects. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111 (19):7024-7029

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Ongoing projects Ongoing projects

In the media In the media

On the publication of the article "The Occurrence of the Holometabolous Pupal Stage Requires the Interaction between E93, Kr-h1 and Broad-Complex", with the participation of Xavier Franch-Marro and David Martín:

On the publication of the article "Specification of Differentiated Adult Progenitors via Inhibition of Endocycle Entry in the Drosophila Trachea", with the participation of Xavier Franch: