Carl Thummel, Ph.D.



Research Focus

All animals mature via discrete stages, from embryonic development to juvenile growth, followed by adulthood. Regulatory signals coordinate developmental responses at each transition, ensuring that animals progress properly through their life cycle. Studies in the Thummel lab have focused on the molecular mechanisms by which stage-specific transcription factors regulate downstream genes that establish the appropriate developmental and metabolic responses at each stage of development. These transcriptional programs direct both the proper biological responses that define each stage in the life cycle as well as provide the competence for distinct responses at the next stage in development. Through these studies we have gained insights into the molecular mechanisms that control temporal progression through the life cycle.

Representative Publications

Thummel, C.S. (1989) The Drosophila E74 promoter contains essential sequences downstream from the start site of transcription. Genes and Dev., 3: 782-792.

LeMaire, M.F. and C.S. Thummel (1990) Splicing precedes polyadenylation during Drosophila E74A transcription. Mol. Cell. Biol., 10: 6059-6063.

Karim, F.D. and C.S. Thummel (1991) Ecdysone coordinates the timing and amounts of E74A and E74B transcription in Drosophila. Genes and Dev., 5: 1067-1079.

Woodard, C.T., Baehrecke, E.H. and C.S. Thummel (1994) A molecular mechanism for the stage-specificity of the prepupal genetic response to ecdysone. Cell, 79: 607-615.

Urness, L.D. and C.S. Thummel (1995) Molecular analysis of a steroid-induced regulatory hierarchy: The Drosophila E74A protein directly regulates L71-6 transcription. EMBO J, 14: 6239-6246.

Jiang, C., Baehrecke, E.H. and C.S. Thummel (1997) Steroid regulated programmed cell death during Drosophila metamorphosis. Development, 124: 4673-4683.

Broadus, J., McCabe, J.R., Endrizzi, B., Thummel, C.S., and C.T. Woodard. (1999) The Drosophila ßFTZ-F1 orphan nuclear receptor provides competence for stage-specific responses to the steroid hormone ecdysone. Molecular Cell, 3: 143-149.

Jiang, C., Lamblin, A.-F., Steller, H., and C.S. Thummel (2000) A steroid-triggered transcriptional hierarchy controls salivary gland cell death during Drosophila metamorphosis.  Molecular Cell, 5: 445-455.

Thummel, C.S. (2001) Molecular mechanisms of developmental timing in C. elegans and Drosophila. Dev. Cell, 1:453-465.

Ward, R.E., Reid, P., Bashirullah, A., D’Avino, P.P. and C.S. Thummel (2003) GFP in living animals reveals dynamic developmental responses to ecdysone during Drosophila metamorphosis.  Dev. Biol., 256: 389-402.

Kozlova, T. and C.S. Thummel (2003) Essential roles for ecdysone signaling during Drosophila mid-embryonic development. Science, 301: 1911-1914.

Wang, L., Evans, J., Andrews, H.K., Beckstead, R.B., Thummel, C.S. and A. Bashirullah (2008) A genetic screen identifies new regulators of steroid-triggered programmed cell death in Drosophila. Genetics, 180: 269-281.

Palanker, L., Tennessen, J.M., Lam, G. and C.S. Thummel (2009) Drosophila HNF4 regulates lipid mobilization and -oxidation. Cell Metabolism, 9: 228–239.

Sieber, M. and C.S. Thummel (2009) The DHR96 nuclear receptor controls triacylglycerol homeostasis in Drosophila. Cell Metabolism, 10: 481-490.

Horner, M.A., Pardee, K., Liu, S., King-Jones, K., Lajoie, G., Edwards, A., Krause, H.M. and C.S. Thummel (2009) The Drosophila DHR96 nuclear receptor binds cholesterol and regulates cholesterol homeostasis. Genes & Dev., 23: 2711-2716.

Tennessen, J.M., Baker, K.D., Lam, G., Evans, J. and C.S. Thummel (2011) The Drosophila Estrogen-Related Receptor directs a metabolic switch that supports developmental growth. Cell Metabolism, 13: 139-148.

Barry, W.E. and C.S. Thummel (2016) The Drosophila HNF4 nuclear receptor promotes glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and mitochondrial function in adults. eLife, DOI: 10.7554/eLife.11183.

Storelli, G., Nam, H.-J., Simcox, J. Villaneuva, C. and C.S. Thummel (2019) Drosophila HNF4 directs a switch in lipid metabolism that supports the transition to adulthood. Dev. Cell, 48: 200-214.

Beebe, K, Robins, M.M., Hernandez, E.J., Lam, G., Horner, M.A. and C.S. Thummel (2020) Drosophila Estrogen-Related Receptor directs a transcriptional switch that supports adult glycolysis and lipogenesis. Genes & Dev., 34: 701-714.

Complete list at MyBibliography

Contact Information


Office: 801.581.2937

Lab: 801.581.2937

Building/Office: EIHG 5200