Welcome to the Harrison lab!

Research in the Harrison lab focuses on how information encoded in the genome is differentially interpreted during organismal development. Specifically, we study the molecular mechanisms regulating gene expression and how changes in gene expression can drive cell identity. Because these processes are highly conserved amongst metazoans, we leverage the wide number of tools available to study this regulation in the Drosophila embryo. Current research in the laboratory is primarily directed at understanding the function of proteins that act at the top of gene regulatory networks to elicit dramatic changes in cell fate.

In our lab, we are committed to making science more equitable. We believe that the most innovative science happens within a diverse team and a supportive environment. To this end, we strive to eliminate systemic barriers to the recruitment and retention of underrepresented groups in science.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.


• We are thrilled to welcome Alex Theis to the lab. She is joining us as a postdoc following her incredibly successful PhD in the Sussel lab at the University of Colorado.

• So proud of the amazing thesis defense by the now Dr. Gaskill. Way to go Marissa!

Recent Publications

•  Larson, E.D., Komori, H., Fitzpatrick, Z.A., Krabbenhoft, S.D., Lee, C.Y. and Harrison, M.M. (2022) Premature translation of the Drosophila zygotic genome activator Zelda is not sufficient to precociously activate gene expression. G3  doi.org/10.1093/g3journal/jkac159

•Larson, E.D., Komori, H., Gibson, T.J., Ostgaard, C.M., Hamm, D.C., Schnell, J.M., Lee, C-Y, and Harrison, M. M. (2021) Cell-type-specific chromatin occupancy by the pioneer factor Zelda drives key developmental transitions in Drosophila. Nat Comm. doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-27506-y

 more publications…