Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Our ability to maintain brain function and preserve learning and memory are at the core of City of Hope research just published in Molecular Cell Biology.
Here, lead author Yanhong Shi, Ph.D., an associate professor in the departments of Neurosciences and Radiation Biology, explains the significance of her paper “Wnt7a Regulates Multiple Steps of Neurogenesis.”
What’s the main finding of this study?
In this study, we demonstrated a unique role for Wnt7a signaling in multiple steps of neurogenesis, a process that is critical to maintaining our brain function and preserving our learning and memory. Using a mouse model with deletion of the Wnt7a gene, we showed that Wnt7a is essential for perpetuating stem cells in the brain, for converting these brain stem cells into neurons, a type of brain cell that makes our brain function, and for ensuring these neurons mature.