Molecular interactions underlying the growth and regeneration of central and peripheral nervous system axons
Germany (bvmd) - Ruprecht-Karls-Universitaet, Heidelberg
Dept. of Developmental Neurobiology, Center for Organismal Studies (COS) University of Heidelberg
Prof. Dr. Elisabeth Pollerberg
Dr. Martin Theiss, Dipl Biol. Christoph Pille, Dipl. Biol. Christian Meisel
English, German
8 weeks
Cities/Months Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Augt Sep Oct Nov Dec
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Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
During development and regeneration of the central nervous system, (future) neurons send out an axon to connect with thousands of other neurons. We study the molecular basis of the elongation and navigation of axons, in particular the interaction of cell adhesion molecules, cytoskeletal molecules and intracellular signaling molecules mediating between them. We analyse the roles of cell adhesion molecules of the immunoglobulin superfamily (IgSF-CAMs) and the intracellular signalling cascades they elicit. Activated leukocyte cell adhesion molecule (ALCAM) is a small and unusual IgSF-CAM present in the plasma membrane of growing axons and their growth cones (i.e. the sensory structure at the axon tip). ALCAM per se is able to promote cell adhesion and axon growth (initial axon outgrowth as well as axon elongation). Widen the knowledge about molecular interactions and their impact on axon growth.
What is the aim of the project?
Ultimately we are aiming at improving an implant for a more efficient enhancement of axon regeneration (patent application ongoing)
What techniques and methods are used?
A variety of techniques is used for biochemistry, cell biology, molecular genetics, analytics, statistics and high end microscopy. Immunohistochemistry, Knock Out Mice, DNA Extraction, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) are also used.
What is the role of the student?
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
No special skills/knowledge required. In case of handicaps, safety requirements should be fulfilled. A report is required.
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts:
- Medical students
- Pre-Medical students from the American-British system
- Review Pollerberg et al.; 2013