Bek’s paper out in Journal of Cell Biology!

Congrats to Dr. Bek Altas and our collaborator Prof. Hiroshi Kawabe from Gunma University, Japan, who teased apart a complicated network of cellular interactions between neurons and glia in the brain that cause seizures. Mechanisms of proteostasis and downstream ion gradient homeostasis in astrocytes results in epileptiform network activity in neurons, possibly informing about the pathophysiology behind rare forms of epilepsy with gene variants of the ubiquitin pathway. Read all about it!

Nedd4-2-dependent regulation of astrocytic Kir4.1 and Connexin43 controls neuronal network activity

Cas9-RC on the cover of The CRISPR Journal!

Ryan Richardson’s paper describing the development of Cas9-RC, a new CRISPR agent with increased performance for knockin, is out in the October 2023 issue of The CRISPR Journal.

Not only that, but the paper got the cover! Kudos to Cheryl Brandenburg for the beautiful image of knockin neurons and astrocytes using Cas9-RC in the developing mouse brain. Congrats to the whole team for concluding this large piece of Synth Bio meets Dev Neurosci!

We would be delighted to have you try out Cas9-RC for your own knockin needs. Plasmids will become available on Addgene within the next few days!

Cas9-RC Knockin on the cover of The CRISPR Journal

Phosphorylation of Neuroligin-3

Our work on how the synaptic adhesion molecule Neuroligin-3 is targeted to either excitatory or inhibitory synapses based on phosphorylation is now available on the bioRxiv! Congrats to Bekir Altas, Liam Tuffy, Annarita Patrizi and the rest of the team in this international collaboration between the University of Maryland School of Medicine, the Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences, and the University of Turin.

Phosphorylation Determines Whether Neuroligin-3 is at Excitatory or Inhibitory Synapses in Different Regions of the Brain

Never heard of “mTOR outposts”? Now you have!

Read all about our postulate of the curious little things called “mTOR outposts” in this Hypothesis & Theory paper just out in Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience!

Neuronal mTOR Outposts: Implications for Translation, Signaling, and Plasticity

Happy day for Bek, Andrea, Garrett, and Alex. Appreciations to Helen Bateup and Akira Yoshii for very constructive reviewing; to Gerardo Morfini for editing the Kinase/phosphatase signaling and axonal function in health and disease topic; and to all in the acknowledgements for the fascinating discussions around the concepts in the mTOR outpost model. Be part of those discussions, send us your thoughts!

How an mTOR pathway gene causes epilepsy in a pedigree dating from 1727

Congratulations to Philip Iffland and the Peter Crino Lab –with help from PouLab grad student Andrea Romanowski among the collaborator team– for the publication of a massive piece of work just out in Brain, spanning the fields of human genetics, cell biology, genome editing, electrophysiology, and brain development to identify the gene (NPRL3) and mechanisms that cause epilepsy in affected patients.

NPRL3 loss alters neuronal morphology, mTOR localization, cortical lamination, and seizure thresholdBrain, 2022

Ryan’s article on advancing scientific excellence through inclusivity at the NIH BRAIN Initiative is out in Neuron!

Lab alum, Ryan R. Richardson, now a AAAS STP fellow at the NIH BRAIN Initiative, together with colleagues deputy Director Andrea C. Beckel-Mitchener, Director John Ngai, and program Director Devon C. Crawford, published a paper today in Neuron, outlining how BRAIN’s mission for scientific excellence is empowered by tapping into the full spectrum of diverse talents and perspectives. We’re grateful for your work in advancing opportunities and excelling innovative neuroscience research through inclusion and diversity!

https://www.cell.com/neuron/fulltext/S0896-6273(21)00836-9

Congrats to Ryan and co. for “Cas9 fusions for precision in vivo editing” out on the bioRxiv!

The lab’s first pub is a nifty piece of synth bio for genome editing the brain. Richardson et al. describe a platform to test and develop new high-precision genome editing reagents. Some of our new CRISPR fusions, like eRad18-Cas9-CtIP with linear donors, showed up to 45-times higher accuracy at point-mutation editing compared to vanilla CRISPR. Another step toward direct in vivo knockin and in situ gene therapy approaches!

https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.07.15.199620v1