François Karch Group

Department of Genetics and Evolution - Faculty of Science, University of Geneva

Department of Genetics and Evolution
Sciences III - University of Geneva
Room 3004A - 3rd floor
30, quai Ernest-Ansermet
CH - 1211 Geneva 4

Phone: +41 (0)22 379 63 31
Fax: +41 (0)22 379 67 95

François Karch
Full professor

Project at a glance

Molecular genetics of the bithorax complex in Drosophila

Although it is now possible to engineer living organisms to express almost any gene in a controlled fashion, the mechanisms governing this control still remain elusive.

In eukaryotes, genes are large, with regulatory elements often tens, or even hundreds of kilobases away from their target promoter. Yet, even given this distance, these distal elements can still faithfully find and control their target promoter in a precise fashion. The experiments performed in our laboratory aim at understanding on how these distal regulatory elements can control gene expression.

As our model system, we study the regulation of the homeotic genes (Hox genes) of the Drosophila bithorax complex (BX-C) regulatory elements, spanning a 300 kilobases-long region of the BX-C DNA are required for proper expression of three Hox genes, Ubx, abd-A and Abd-B.