Male Drosophila genital imaginal disc during the pupal stage showing mesenchyme-to-epithelial transitions.Drosophila hearts.  The upper one is the heart of a wild type, i.e. normal, fly, while the interesting one below shows what happens when two particular genes of the Forkhead family are defective.  Mutations in the counterparts of these genes cause congenital heart defects in humansBeating cardiomyocytes (heart cells) obtained by directing human induced pluripotent human stem cells (hiPSCs) along the cardiac lineage
 

Developmental Genetics & Systems Biology
 

Research Interests:  Cardiogenesis (heart development); Organogenesis; Transcriptional regulatory networks; Signaling pathways; Systems biology; Developmental biology; Computational biology; Genetics; Functional genomics

The Ahmad Lab uses integrated genetic, genomic and computational strategies to study organogenesis, with a focus on heart development and transcriptional regulation. Utilizing both Drosophila as a model system and mammalian stem cells directed to differentiate along the cardiac lineage, our goal is to arrive at a comprehensive understanding of cardiogenesis which incorporates both a systems-level view of the underlying genetic network and detailed examinations of the roles of individual genes.

The Center for Genomic Advocacy

We also use similar integrated approaches to examine and dissect biological processes involved in the development of other organs. 

We are based in the Department of Biology in the College of Arts and Sciences at Indiana State University, and are part of the consortium of research laboratories comprising The Center for Genomic Advocacy.