Transcriptional control in the Drosophila blastoderm
The syncytial organization of the blastoderm stage of Drosophila development affords unique advantages for the study of transcriptional control. It is possible to use the entire embryo as a spatially resolved microarray in which the response of reporters to quantitatively assayed transcription factors can be monitored at cellular resolution. This provides an opportunity to construct quantitative and predictive models of transcriptional control that are not limited to single enhancers. I will discuss progress in constructing such models, including applications to evolution and synthetic biology.