PositionSection Chief for Inner Ear Development
Research Topics Determine which molecules and regions of the otic placode are required for the normal patterning of the developing inner ear. Understand at the molecular level how placodal cells choose between neuronal, nonsensory or sensory cell fates. The role of the transcription factor Six1 in the formation of mechano-sensory hair cells and neurons. Research Overview Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) is one of the more common birth defects and approximately 20% of these patients have inner ear malformations that are readily visible using radiological examination. What causes these inner ear malformations and why they should lead to SNHL, as well as balance disorders, is often unknown. The laboratorys research is divided between two model systems for developmental studies, the frog Xenopus laevis and the zebrafish Danio rerio. The main goal of the frog research is to determine which molecules and regions of the otic placode are required for the normal patterning of the developing inner ear in order to better understand the causes of human inner ear malformations. The goal of our zebrafish studies is to understand at the molecular level how placodal cells choose between neuronal, nonsensory or sensory cell fates. Our research combines embryological manipulations with molecular perturbations of specific cell signaling pathways and single cell lineage analyses, to provide unique insights into how the inner ear is patterned during embryonic development.
Lab MembershipsCollazo Laboratory (Principal Investigator/Director)
House Ear Institute
Department of Cell and Molecular Biology
2100 West Third Street
Los Angeles, CA