During development, molecules in the immature brain steer axons to their target areas, following long and complex pathways. Proper pathfinding is required for the establishment of correct synaptic connections, and disturbances in the intricately regulated process of axonal pathfinding are thought to cause a variety of neurodevelopmental disorders. Netrin-1 is a secreted, attractive axon guidance cue that is crucial for the proper formation of the nervous system. The mechanisms by which netrin-1 mediates its axon outgrowth promoting effects are largely unknown, and the pathways identified thus far seem incongruent: cAMP/PKA signaling, intra-axonal protein synthesis and degradation, and regulation of the activity of Rho family GTPases, proteins with l
During development, guidance molecules in the immature brain direct axons to their target areas; disturbances in this process cause neurodevelopmental disorders, such as schizophrenia. This proposal addresses the intra-axonal mechanisms governing this process. I expect my studies to have broad relevance for the understanding of the aetiology of neurodevelopmental disorders.
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