Faculty/Staff Directory

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Last Name

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Associate Professor


Office Address
3323 Kindschi Hall of Science

Office Phone

Areas of Expertise
Molecular and Developmental Genetics

Courses Taught at GVSU

BIO 120 General Biology I
BIO 328 Biomedical Ethics
BIO 355 Human Genetics
BIO 376 Genetics Laboratory
BIO 405 Cell and Molecular Biology
BIO 406 Cell & Molecular Biology Laboratory

Research Interests

Dr. Sass’ current research involves her favorite experimental organism, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster.  She is using the well-studied process of oogenesis to determine the molecular components that are required to establish a functional egg. She is studying a unique gain-of-function mutation that disrupts cell-cell signaling between germ-line derived cells and somatic cells of an egg chamber during oogenesis.  Characterizations of this mutation, as well as genetic analysis of its interaction with proteins known to function in this pathway, are currently underway.


Ph.D. in Biochemistry & Biophysics; University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 1994.
B.S. in Biology; Kent State University, 1983.

Select Publications

Sass GL, Pannuti A, Lucchesi JC. Male-specific lethal complex of Drosophila targets activated regions of the chromosome for chromatin remodeling. Proc Nat'l Acad Sci. USA. 2003 Jul 8;100(14):8287-91.

Sass GL, Henikoff S. Pairing-dependent mislocalization of a Drosophila brown gene reporter to a heterochromatic environment. Genetics. 1999 Jun;152(2):595-604.

Sass GL, Henikoff S. Comparative analysis of position-effect variegation mutations in Drosophila melanogaster delineates the targets of modifiers. Genetics. 1998 Feb;148(2):733-41.

Csink AK, Sass GL, Henikoff S. Drosophila heterochromatin: retreats for repeats. In: Nuclear Organization, Chromatin Structure and Gene Expression (ed R Van Driel and A Otte), pp 223-235. Oxford University Press, Oxford. 1997.

Sass GL, Comer AR, Searles LL. The ovarian tumor protein isoforms of Drosophila  melanogaster exhibit differences in function, expression, and localization. Dev Biol. 1995 Jan;167(1):201-12.

Sass GL, Mohler JD, Walsh RC, Kalfayan LJ, Searles LL. Structure and expression of hybrid dysgenesis-induced alleles of the ovarian tumor (otu) gene in Drosophila  melanogaster. Genetics. 1993 Feb;133(2):253-63.


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