Using CRISPR-Cas9 to Create a Null Allele of Outsiders in D. Melanogaster
Programmed cell death (PCD) is a biological process that shapes human development. Yet, cancer cells are insusceptible to this process leading to the proliferation of tumors. Research on PCD can produce cancer therapies which increase tumor susceptibility to PCD for tumor eradication.
The exact mechanisms of PCD are currently unknown. My research aims to uncover the role of the gene outsiders in the scheme of PCD in Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) embryos. During embryogenesis, Drosophila germ cells travel across the embryo to the gonads for proper development. Mutants with the outsiders gene respond less to PCD resulting in the correct number of germ cells in the gonads, but an excess outlying the peripherals.
To decipher the mechanisms involved in PCD, outsiders will be excised from the genome using the CRISPR-Cas9 genetic engineering technique. This knock-out phenotype will provide insight on the network of PCD for human health applications.