The proper functioning of the nervous system relies on the establishment of precise
neuronal circuits. These neuronal circuits are largely formed during early development.
To form functional neuronal circuits, neurons receive specific information in
the form of extracellular cues from the target tissues that they innervate. The
family of neurotrophins provides one of the best examples of these target-derived
instructive cues that regulate diverse developmental events in the vertebrate
nervous system, including survival, axonal and dendritic growth and synapse formation.
Using a combination of cell biological, biochemical and imaging techniques as
well as mouse genetics, we are investigating: (1) how neurotrophic factors coordinate
neuronal development by regulating the neuronal endocytic machinery, and (2)
growth factor signaling pathways underlying axonal growth, morphology and innervation
of target tissues during development.
Rejji Kuruvilla, Ph.D.
Department of Biology
Johns Hopkins University
3400 N. Charles St., 224 Mudd Hall
Baltimore, MD 21218
Phone: (410) 516 2366
Fax: (410) 516 5213