Current Projects in the Groves Lab
Research in our lab spans the development of the inner ear from its earliest beginnings as a piece of embryonic ectoderm to the development of the highly patterned organ of Corti in the cochlea. We are also interested using our understanding of developmental processes to address why the sensory tissue of the cochlea fails to regenerate after damage.
We have an ongoing collaboration with Hugo Bellen's lab at Baylor in which we are trying to use the fruit fly Drosophila to identify new mutations in genes that affect hearing. We are also working with Huda Zoghbi's lab to identify targets of transcription factors that promote the differentiation of sensory hair cells. Finally, we also work on some aspects of craniofacial development, prompted by the discovery of the Foxi3 transcription factor, a Forkhead gene that plays crucial roles in the development of the inner ear and the branchial arch region and which causes canine ectodermal dysplasia in three breeds of hairless dogs.