Laminar organization of neurons in cerebral cortex is critical for normal brain function. Two distinct cellular events guarantee the emergence of laminar organization-- coordinated sequence of neuronal migration, and generation of radial glial cells that supports neurogenesis and neuronal migration. Our current goal is to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal migration and layer formation in the mammalian cerebral cortex and the relevance of these mechanisms to neurodevelopmental disorders such as Schizophrenia.
Our approach is to combine genetic analysis of neuron- glial interactions with in vivo examination of neuron- glial functions to understand the appropriate positioning and connectivity of neurons in cerebral cortex. Towards this goal, we are studying the following three related questions: