Molecular and Biophysical Approaches to Understanding the Nervous System
Our lab is interested in synaptic function at the molecular and circuit levels. Formation and proper function of the nervous system depend critically on the operation of chemical synapses, which are the means by which neurons transmit information to one another. We study the molecules that underlie synaptic vesicle fusion and endocytosis in C. elegans using optical, genetic, biochemical, and behavioral approaches. We are currently focused on three lines of research: spatial and temporal dynamics of synaptic proteins, the mechanisms underlying synaptic vesicle fusion and its modulation, and the impact of axonal ER on synapse function, axon integrity, and neurodegeneration.