Sensory system and Brain development in Xenopus.
The Scripps Research InstitutePhone: (858) 784-2220
Fax: (858) 784-2222
Sensory experience is required for normal brain development. The goal of the research in my lab is to determine the mechanisms by which sensory experience affects the development of brain structures and function. We address these issues using in vivo imaging, electrophysiology and manipulation of gene expression. We have discovered that neuronal activity regulates the development of the visual system through a variety of mechanisms, including changes in neuronal structure, synaptic strength, synaptogeneis and gene expression. Visual system activity also engages homeostatic mechanisms which maintain the function of the visual system over a wide range of input levels.