Welcome to the home page of Tor Erik Rusten's group Tumor-Host Biology

Why use Drosophila?

See the awesome videos WHY USE THE FLY? and SMALL FLY BIG IMPACT or read more about the use of Drosophila in science here.

Some key points

  • Since all animals descend from a common ancestor the molecular machineries controlling cellular processes are similar. Findings in animal model organisms can therefore often be directly extrapolated to other animals, including humans.
  • The cellular processes that are miss-regulated in cancer, like cell signaling, -proliferation, -growth, -death, -polarity, -migration and more, can be studied in the fly. 
  • Drosophila is the most sophisticated animal genetic model system for in vivo analysis of gene function
  • Genes that occur in several duplicated copies in humans (paralogoues), more often than not, are represented by one copy in Drosophila making genetic analysis of gene function easier
  • Drosophila can be made genetically mosaic enabling studies of gene function in a subset of cells carrying a genetic defect emulating genetic changes occuring in cancer.



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