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Daniela Drummond-Barbosa, PhD

Associate Professor

Departmental Affiliation(s):

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Division: Reproductive Biology
Environmental Health Sciences (Joint)


PhD , 1995


Stem cells respond to a variety of physiological stimuli, including dietary changes. Yet, the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms are poorly understood. Over the past several years, we have been exploring the question of how ovarian stem cells and their descendents sense and respond to diet in Drosophila, a highly tractable genetic model system. What signals mediate the effects of diet? What organs, tissues and cell types generate and receive each signal? How they are seamlessly integrated to control egg output? These are some of the questions we are addressing using a combination of genetic, molecular, and cell biological tools.

Honors and Awards

1988 - First place in college entrance exam for Biological Sciences, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (Brazil)

1990-1991 - Scientific Initiation Fellowship, Conselho Nacional de Pesquisas (Brazil)

1993-1995 - Miles Scholar Award, Bayer Corporation

1997-2000 - National Research Service Award, National Institutes of Health

2006 - Chancellor’s Award for Research, Vanderbilt University

2008 - Semifinalist, 2009 Early Career Scientist Competition, Howard Hughes Medical Institute 

2009 - Invited Plenary Lecture, 50th Annual Drosophila Research Conference, Chicago, IL

2007-2011 - American Cancer Society Research Scholar

Research Keywords Stem cells, reproduction, fertility, oogenesis, diet, insulin, TOR, steroids, Drosophila, developmental biology, endocrinology, physiology, genetics

  • Ables, E. T., Drummond-Barbosa, D. Cyclin E controls Drosophila female germline stem cell maintenance independently of its role in proliferation by modulating responsiveness to niche signals. In revision.

  • Kim, M.-Y., Bucciarelli, E., Morton, D. G., Williams, B. C., Blake-Hodek, K., Pellicani, C., Von Stetina, J. R., Hu, X., Somma, M. P., Drummond-Barbosa, D.*, Goldberg, M. L.* Bypassing the Greatwall-Endosulfine pathway:variable requirements for a pivotal cell cycle regulatory module in Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegansGenetics 191:1181-1197, 2012. *Co-corresponding/ senior authors.

  • Ables, E. T., Laws, K., Drummond-Barbosa, D. Control of adult stem cells in vivo by a dynamic physiological environment: diet-dependent systemic factors in Drosophila and beyond. WIREs Dev. Biol. 1:657-674, 2012 (invited, peer-reviewed review).

  • Von Stetina, J. R., LaFever, K. S., Rubin, M., Hu, X., Drummond-Barbosa, D. A genetic screen for dominant enhancers of the cell cycle regulator alpha-Endosulfine identifies matrimony as a strong functional interactor in Drosophila. G3: Genes, Genomes, Genetics 1:607-613, 2011.

  • Ables, E. T., Drummond-Barbosa, D. Food for thought: neural stem cells on a diet. Cell Stem Cell 8:352-354, 2011.