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I study the Slitrk1 protein and its role in spinal cord wiring. Slitrk1, and other Slitrk family members, are associated with a plethora of neurological disorders, but their functions at a molecular and cellular level have not been well characterized. Understanding what these proteins are doing could help us to better understand the diseases that they are associated with. I characterized protein localization of Slitrk1 in the zebrafish spinal cord and found that Slitrk1 protein is present in Rohon Beard neurons, a type of temporary sensory neuron that undergoes apoptosis. Because of the timing of Slitrk1’s expression in these neurons, in addition to the involvement of other Slitrk proteins in neuronal survival processes, we hypothesize that Slitrk1 is playing a role in Rohon Beard neuron survival. Immunohistochemistry, cell counts, and apoptosis assays are employed to test this hypothesis.
Day, Marilyn M., "The Role of Slitrk1 in Sensory Neuron Development" (2016). Biology Honors Papers. 13.