Goldberg Daniel J
Department of Pharmacology
Columbia University Medical Center
He is professsor at Columbia University.
We are interested in cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the growth of neuronal processes during development and after injury. We have focused on the growth cone, the specialized ending of a growing process whose interactions with environmental cues are critical in regulating the rate and direction of growth. We are seeking to define the intracellular changes within the growth cone caused by certain important cues and the signal transduction mechanisms that elicit those changes. We focus on the actin filament and microtubule systems of the growth cone. We also want to apply this knowledge to the analysis of the synapse formation that occurs during learning in the adult animal. We are examining the morphological events underlying the formation of new synapses and the growth of neuronal arbor associated with certain types of long-term synaptic plasticity, using low light level fluorescence imaging of live cells. We are currently examining the contribution to this growth of changes in protein synthesis and in the delivery of mRNA species to the synapse. For our experiments, we use both vertebrate and invertebrate neurons studied in culture. Many of our studies involve the use of high resolution video microscopy. In addition, we use biochemical techniques such as gel electrophoresis and blotting detections (Western, Northern), single cell microinjection, and molecular techniques such as antisense depletion of particular proteins.