sensory neuron development and function
Animals protect themselves by sensing potentially harmful thermal, mechanical or chemical stimuli. This process of nociception is mediated by specific sensory receptors and circuits. We analyze the development and function of trigeminal sensory neurons, the primary nociceptors in the vertebrate head. We are using genetic and imaging approaches to study the molecules that regulate neuronal interactions and morphologies. In addition, we have begun to use in vivo imaging approaches and serial EM reconstruction to determine how different stimuli are encoded in the trigeminal ganglion and hindbrain.
Most Recent Research Publication on Sensory Neuron Development and Function:Attenuation of Notch and Hedgehog Signaling Is Required for Fate Specification in the Spinal Cord [PLoS Genetics]
P Huang, F Xiong, SG Megason, AF Schier
To map the temporal profile of Hh response at single-cell resolution, we developed a novel technique (PHRESH, photoconvertible reporter of signaling history) using a photoconvertible Hh signaling reporter, Ptc1-Kaede.
During tissue formation, progenitor cells generate both differentiated cells and progenitor cells. It is poorly understood how this balance between self-renewal and differentiation generates the correct number of different cell types. Here, we use zebrafish spinal cord development as a model system to investigate how neural progenitor cells switch from progenitor states to differentiated fates. Combining genetic manipulation and a novel method to study cell signaling in live embryos, our data show that this process requires the dynamic regulation of two signaling pathways: the Notch signaling pathway and the Hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway. In neural progenitors, Notch signaling maintains the competence of neural progenitors to respond to Hh signaling. In parallel, Hedgehog signaling functions to induce cell fate identity. As cells switch from progenitor states to differentiated states, both Notch and Hh signaling become attenuated. Thus, the dynamic deployment of Notch and Hh signaling controls the renewal and differentiation of progenitor cells.
Recent related papers:
of Notch and Hedgehog signaling is
required for fate specification in the spinal cord.
Huang P, Xiong F, Megason SG, Schier AF.
PLoS Genet. 2012 Jun
Robo2 determines subtype-specific axonal
projections of trigeminal sensory neurons.
Pan YA, Choy M, Prober DA, Schier AF.
Development. 2012 Feb;139(3):591-600. Epub 2011 Dec 21.
BAPTI and BAPTISM Birthdating of Neurons in
Pan YA, Caron SJ, Schier AF.
Cold Spring Harb Protoc. 2012 Jan 1;2012(1).
Multicolor Brainbow imaging in zebrafish.
Pan YA, Livet J, Sanes JR, Lichtman JW, Schier AF.
Cold Spring Harb Protoc. 2011 Jan 1;2011(1):pdb.prot5546.
Monitoring neural activity with
bioluminescence during natural behavior.
Naumann EA, Kampff AR, Prober DA, Schier AF, Engert F.
Nat Neurosci. 2010 Apr;13(4):513-20. Epub 2010 Mar 21.
Zebrafish TRPA1 channels are required for
chemosensation but not for thermosensation or mechanosensory hair cell
Prober DA, Zimmerman S, Myers BR, McDermott BM Jr, Kim SH, Caron S, Rihel J, Solnica-Krezel L, Julius D, Hudspeth AJ, Schier AF.
J Neurosci. 2008 Oct 1;28(40):10102-10.
In vivo birthdating by BAPTISM reveals that
trigeminal sensory neuron diversity depends on early neurogenesis.
Caron SJ, Prober D, Choy M, Schier AF.
Development. 2008 Oct;135(19):3259-69. Epub 2008 Aug 28.
Escape behavior elicited by single,
channelrhodopsin-2-evoked spikes in zebrafish somatosensory neurons.
Douglass AD, Kraves S, Deisseroth K, Schier AF, Engert F.
Curr Biol. 2008 Aug 5;18(15):1133-7.
Members of the miRNA-200 family regulate
Choi PS, Zakhary L, Choi WY, Caron S, Alvarez-Saavedra E, Miska EA, McManus M, Harfe B, Giraldez AJ, Horvitz HR, Schier AF, Dulac C.
Neuron. 2008 Jan 10;57(1):41-55.