The goal of our research is to understand how complex nervous systems are assembled during development. More specifically, we want to understand the molecular mechanisms that direct proper "wiring" of the nervous system, the processes of axon pathfinding and synaptic target recognition. To address these questions we utilize Drosophila as our primary model system where we can take full advantage of a powerful array of genetic, molecular, and cellular approaches. We are also investigating how our favorite families of axon guidance cues and their receptors evolve. By investigating the expression and function of these genes in other insects, we hope to gain insights into the evolution of axon guidance pathways and developmental mechanisms in general.
Dorsten J.N., Varughese B.E., Karmo S., Seeger M.A., VanBerkum M.F. 2010. In the absence of frazzled over-expression of Abelson tyrosine kinase disrupts commissure formation and causes axons to leave the embryonic CNS. PLoS One 5: e9822.
Forsthoefel, D.J., Liebl, E.C., Kolodziej, P.A., and Seeger, M.A. 2005.The Abelson tyrosine kinase, the Trio GEF, and Enabled interact with the Netrin receptor Frazzled in Drosophila. Development 132: 1983-1994.
Challa, A.K., McWhorter, M.L., Wang, C., Seeger, M.A., Beattie, C.B. 2005. Robo3 isoforms have distinct roles during zebrafish development. Mechanisms of Development 122: 1073-1086.
Liebl, E.C., Rowe, R.G., Forsthoefel, D.J., Stammler, A.L., Schmidt, E.R., Turski, M., and Seeger, M.A. 2003. Interactions between the secreted protein Amalgam, its transmembrane receptor Neurotactin and the Abelson tyrosine kinase affect axon pathfinding. Development 130: 3217-3266.
McGovern, V.L., Pacak , C.A. , Sewell, S.T., Turski, M.L., and Seeger, M.A. 2003. A targeted gain of function screen in the embryonic CNS of Drosophila. Mechanisms of Development.120: 1193-1207.
McGovern, V.L. and Seeger, M.A. 2003. Mosaic analysis reveals a cell-autonomous, neuronal requirement for Commissureless in the Drosophila CNS. Development, Genes & Evolution 213: 500-504.
Challa A.K., Beattie, C.E. and Seeger, M.A. 2001. Identification and characterization of roundabout orthologs in zebrafish. Mechanisms of Development 101: 249-253.