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In the Sokolowski lab we study how genes and the environment interact to influence behaviour in fruit flies. We discovered the foraging gene which influences naturally occurring behavioural variation including the rover/sitter polymorphism. This gene plays a role in behaviour in many other organisms including social insects. We are interested in the mechanistic and evolutionary basis of this genetic polymorphism. Two fundamental questions we seek to understand better are:
- How do genes and their proteins act in the nervous system in order to cause normal individual differences in behaviour?
- How do genes and their proteins act in response to the environment to affect normal individual differences in behaviour?