How do cells acquire a unique fate, a specific function or a particular molecular identity? How is cellular identity regulating cell behavior and how does it inform the formation, maintenance and function of tissues, organs and organisms? These questions are at the intersection of cell, developmental and mechanobiology and are the focus of my research program.
My lab is addressing these questions in the context of asymmetric cell division (ACD), an evolutionary conserved mechanism that creates cellular diversity. ACD is often preceded by different forms of cellular and subcellular asymmetry but the underlying mechanisms and contributions to binary cell fate decisions are mostly unknown. In my seminar, I will present how my lab is using fly neural stem cells and mollusk embryos to investigate mechanisms underlying cellular and subcellular asymmetry and its potential impact on cell fate decisions.