Our mission is to elucidate the cellular and molecular mechanisms that establish and regulate the microtubule arrays of the neuron during development, health and disease.
Goals of Our Laboratory
- Elucidate the roles microtubule play in neuronal development, with emphasis on issues including axon development, dendrite development, growth cone turning, neuronal migration and the branching of axons and dendrites.
- Understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which the microtubule arrays of the neuron are established and regulated to carry out their various functional roles, with emphasis on microtubule-based molecular motor proteins and microtubule-severing proteins.
- Elucidate the contribution of microtubule-based mechanisms to nerve degeneration that accompany disease and injury, with emphasis on spinal cord injury, Alzheimer’s disease and hereditary spastic paraplegia.
- Develop novel microtubule-based therapies for treating injured or diseased axons.
Toward these ends, we use a variety of contemporary techniques, including microscopic, biochemical and molecular assays.
When the researchers depleted the protein ninein — which holds the microtubules to the centrosome — the saw that an increased number of unattached microtubules led to abnormal neuronal migration. This suggests that while a little bit of sliding is helpful for neuronal migration, too much can be problematic. The video shows time-lapse images of a migrating granule neuron, treated with control siRNA(first cell) or ninein siRNA (second cell).
News and Announcements
"Study Shows How Neurons Reach Their Final Destinations"
DrexelNow (May 17, 2016)
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