The central nervous system (CNS) of people has only a limited capacity to regenerate after traumatic damage or degenerative diseases. However, in the past few years several lines of evidence have shown that new neurons are generated in the brains of higher vertebrates, and even humans. While the amount of neurogenesis that occurs in adults is limited, the capacity for stimulating this process for repair and regeneration is just beginning to be explored. We have found that the retina of the post hatch chick is capable of a limited amount of regeneration. In the past year we have also discovered a similar process in the rat and mouse retina. In this proposal we outline experiments that will lead to a better understanding of the molecular factors that regulate glial proliferation, and the mechanisms by which they maintain their phenotype. We also will attempt to define the basis for their plasticity and ability to serve as retinal progenitors and as a substrate for retinal regeneration. We use the retina, an easily accessible part of the central nervous system, as a model for the rest of the CNS.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Eye Institute (NEI)
Research Project (R01)
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Neurogenesis and Cell Fate Study Section (NCF)
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Greenwell, Thomas
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University of Washington
Anatomy/Cell Biology
Schools of Medicine
United States
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La Torre, Anna; Hoshino, Akina; Cavanaugh, Christopher et al. (2015) The GIPC1-Akt1 Pathway Is Required for the Specification of the Eye Field in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells. Stem Cells 33:2674-85
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Georgi, Sean A; Reh, Thomas A (2010) Dicer is required for the transition from early to late progenitor state in the developing mouse retina. J Neurosci 30:4048-61
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Hartman, Byron H; Nelson, Branden R; Reh, Thomas A et al. (2010) Delta/notch-like EGF-related receptor (DNER) is expressed in hair cells and neurons in the developing and adult mouse inner ear. J Assoc Res Otolaryngol 11:187-201

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