Nervous System Diseases

Paola Arlotta, PhD

Paola Arlotta, PhD

Harvard University Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology

During embryonic development, neural progenitors undergo precise differentiation to generate the amazing variety of neuronal types that ultimately populate the mature brain. While some of the basic mechanisms that control general aspects of progenitor specification into neurons have been defined, the genetic programs that control the differentiation of distinct types of neurons in the brain are still largely unknown.

Susan Dymecki, MD, PhD

Susan Dymecki, MD, PhD

Harvard Medical School

The step-by-step differentiation of embryonic cells into different types of neurons lays the foundation for our sensory responses, motor commands, and cognitive behaviors. Our research explores such differentiation programs in mammals using a combination of genetic, embryological, and molecular biological methods. While the generation of such neural diversity is a complex process culminating in the most sophisticated of wiring circuits, one simplifying approach is to start by tracking the specification, differentiation, and migration paths taken by specific sets of cells originating from primitive neuroectoderm.

Kevin C. Eggan, PhD

Kevin C. Eggan, PhD

Harvard University Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology
Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Kevin Eggan, Ph.D. Professor in the Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Harvard University.

James Gusella, PhD

James Gusella, PhD

Massachusetts General Hospital
Harvard Medical School

My laboratory is focused on understanding nervous system disease using molecular genetic strategies, beginning with human patients and proceeding through in vitro and modeling studies, with the ultimate goal of improving diagnosis, management and treatment.

Zhigang He, PhD, BM

Zhigang He, PhD, BM

Harvard Medical School
Boston Children's Hospital
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Developing neural repair strategies to restore functions after central nervous system (CNS) injury such as spinal cord injury is still an unmet challenge.

Jeffrey D. Macklis, MD

Jeffrey D. Macklis, MD

Harvard University Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology

Our laboratory is directed toward both 1) understanding the molecular controls over neuron sub-type specification and development in the cerebral cortex, and 2) applying developmental controls toward brain and spinal cord repair—specifically, the cellular repair of complex cerebral cortex and cortical output circuitry (in particular, cortico-spinal motor neuron (CSMN) circuitry that degenerates in ALS and other “upper motor neuron” degenerative diseases, and whose injury is centrally involved in loss of motor function in spinal cord injury).

Lee L. Rubin, PhD

Lee L. Rubin, PhD

Harvard University Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology

Dr. Rubin received his PhD in Neuroscience from The Rockefeller University and completed postdoctoral fellowships in Pharmacology from Harvard Medical School and in Neurobiology from Stanford University School of Medicine. He has worked both in academia and in industry.

Brian J. Wainger, MD, PhD

Brian J. Wainger, MD, PhD

Massachusetts General Hospital
Harvard Medical School

Brian Wainger’s lab fuses electrophysiology and stem cell biology to explore how abnormal neuronal physiology contributes to diseases of the motor and …

Christopher A. Walsh, MD, PhD

Christopher A. Walsh, MD, PhD

Boston Children's Hospital
Harvard Medical School
Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Our lab is interested in identifying genes that direct the development of the cerebral cortex, not only because of their disease-related importance but also because they tell us about the normal development and evolution of the brain.