NIH Director’s Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series
Ion channels catalyze the diffusion of inorganic ions down their electrochemical gradients across cell membranes. Because the ionic movements are passive, ion channels would seem to be extraordinarily simple physical systems, yet they are responsible for electrical signaling in living cells. Among their many functions, ion channels control the pace of the heart, regulate the secretion of hormones into the bloodstream, and generate the electrical impulses underlying information transfer in the nervous system. Dr.
It is now widely accepted that immune surveillance is required for supporting brain functional plasticity and repair. Participating cells include the microglia, the resident myeloid immune cells of the brain, circulating monocytes, and CD4+ T cells. Over the years, we demonstrated that leukocytes supporting the brain can gain access to the brain through a unique compartment within the brain territory, the chroid plexus epithelium (CP) at the blood-cerebrospinal fluid-barrier (B-CSF-B), remote from the brain parenchyma.
Thomas Südhof is interested in how synapses form and function in the developing and adult brain. His work focuses on the role of synaptic cell-adhesion molecules in establishing synapses and shaping their properties, on pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms of membrane traffic, and on impairments in synapse formation and synaptic function in neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders.
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