Office: 613-562-5800 ext. 2605
Work E-mail: mekker@uOttawa.ca
Ekker's research into the area of evolutionary developmental biology – using mice, zebrafish and lamprey DNA – aims to explore the hypothesis that it is not only the genes themselves, but how they are regulated that makes the difference. Ekker's work in particular pinpoints the Dlx homeobox genes, which play an important role in how the brain and head develops in embryos.
Scientists believe a change in the function or the regulation of genes during embryonic development can lead to the development of certain types of disease. Dr. Ekker's working hypothesis is that a shift in Dlx regulation could be directly related to some cases of autism. His research aims to explore how and why that could happen.
control of gene expression Transgenic animals, GABAergic interneurons