The Department of Chromatin Regulation is headed by Asifa Akhtar. The major research goal of this department is to study the chromatin and epigenetic mechanisms underlying gene regulation using dosage compensation in Drosophila as a powerful model system to study chromatin regulation at individual gene level as well from a chromosomal perspective. We are addressing how the dosage compensation complex, composed of RNA and proteins (the MSL complex) is specifically targeted to the X chromosome. Furthermore, we are investigating whether chromosome organization and nuclear architecture contribute to transcription activity and how this influences X chromosomal regulation. Ultimately, we would like to understand the molecular mechanism by which dosage compensation modulates X chromosomal transcriptional output. In order to achieve that, we are employing biochemical, genetic, genomic and bioinformatics methodologies to generate a holistic model of dosage compensation. The laboratory of Nicola Iovino studies mechanisms that regulate epigenetic reprogramming of gametes, germline epigenetic inheritance, and de novo establishment of epigenetic memory.