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Prestigious award for Faculty Member Prof. Nicholas Gompel

Human Frontier Science Program for 3-year collaborative research project


Prof. Nicolas Gompel, who holds a Chair in Evolutionary Ecology in the Faculty of Biology at LMU, studies the genetic basis of evolutionary change. In his project, he will undertake a “Quantitative Dissection of Molecular Determinants of Enhancer Function”, in collaboration with Stephan Preibisch (Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine, Berlin) and Remo Rohs (University of Southern California, Los Angeles). The overall goal is to understand the molecular clockwork of enhancers, the DNA switches that turn gene expression on in the space and time. Focusing on a specific enhancer active in the wing of the fruit fly Drosophila, the team will design a collection of variants of this sequence. They will describe sequence variation mathematically, and then assay the activity of each variant in flies. The team has also devised a method to quantitatively describe the activity of enhancers in fly wings. Ultimately, the scientists want to establish a mathematical model that describes how sequence determines activity. They will use this model to design synthetic gene switches.

Congratulations for the award!

Source: LMU News