How do neurons maintain their specialised status?
Nerfin-1 mutant neuroblast clones contain ectopic neural stem cells (Mira, red)
The bidirectional conversion between differentiated cells and stem cells often underlies carcinogenesis. Mechanisms must be in place to prevent differentiated cells from reverting to multipotent stem cells. We have recently discovered that zinc finger transcription factor Nerfin-1 is required to maintain neurons in a differentiated state. In the absence of Nerfin-1, neurons rapidly increase their cellular growth and switch on stem cell markers, then form tumours. The lab is interested in identifying novel transcription factors that regulate this process and investigate whether these factors are involved in regeneration.
Dr Francesca Froldi, Post Doctoral Researcher
Kellie Veen, PhD student
Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute
Dr Patricia Jusuf, Biosciences, University of Melbourne
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