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Dr. Turner’s research focuses on members of the POU class of transcription factors and the broader class of homeodomain transcription factors that have been linked to numerous developmental syndromes affecting every organ system. He and his group are examining how these transcription factors regulate gene expression in development. More specifically, Turner is exploring the role of the homeodomain factor Hmx1 in the development of the sensory innervation of the face and in facial morphogenesis. An overall goal of his collaboration with other scientists at the University of Washington is to bridge the two fields of neural and craniofacial development and to identify unexpected molecular connections which may shed light on a number of human genetic disorders with complex phenotypes. Together, Turner and his group are seeking to make a substantial contribution to understanding the basic mechanisms of neuronal development and to advance our ability to understand neurological and behavioral disorders which have a genetic or developmental component.
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