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Associate Professor, Biology Associate Professor, Genetics

Research Interests

Key words: Developmental genomics

Lab Website

Research in the lab focuses on how a single genome gives rise to a variety of cell types and body parts during development. We use Drosophila as a model organism to investigate (1) how transcription factors access DNA to regulate complex patterns of gene expression, and (2) how post-translational modification of histones contributes to maintenance of gene expression programs over time. We combine a range of approaches, including genomics (CUT&RUN, ATAC-seq, RNA-seq), genetics (transgenesis, CRISPR), microscopy, and biochemistry to address both of these questions. Defects in cell fate specification and maintenance of cell identity occur in most human diseases. A mechanistic understanding of normal development will shed light on how these processes go awry in disease.

Mentor Training:

  • Bias 101
  • Faculty Mentoring Workshop for Biomedical Researchers
  • REI Racial Equity Workshop Phase 1
  • Safe Zone

Training Program Affiliations:

  • Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
  • Biology
  • Genetics and Molecular Biology


Dan McKay in UNC Genetics News

Daniel McKay