Researcher's Profile


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Research Outline      2014-10-21 14:18:58

We are interested in mammalian developmental processes mediated by neuron-enriched molecules. Using  mRNA differential display, our labora- tory has identified several candidate molecules enriched in the mouse embryonic nervous system. One such candidate is a novel member of Bcl-2 superfamily, Blm-s, which is temporally and spatially expressed in the developing nervous system to execute neuronal apoptosis through BAX- mediated, cytochrome c release process.  How Blm-s is transcriptionally regulated is our focus of study for this specific project.  Another candidate molecule studied at our laboratory is ARMS, which has been well shown by other groups to play a crucial role in the formation of neuromuscular junction and in the sustained MAPK signaling triggered by NGF-bound Trk to regulate neurite formation. We have extended ARMS biological function into tumorigenesis of melanoma, documenting the principle that tumor often results from an aberrant uncontrolled developmental process.  Besides, we have demonstrated that ARMS is functionally involved in the regulation of cell death program, of which the cellular and biological mechanism is under intensive study at our laboratory.  Another focus of our study is to decipher the signaling pathway transmitted by class 3 semaphorin using branching morpho- genesis of the developing submandibular gland as our assay system.  Sema3- signaling is involved in multiple processes of neuronal development and we have recently demonstrated their role in the regulation of branching morpho- genesis of the developing salivary gland. Specifically, the signaling transmitted by plexin-D1 is under intensive study.