Date of Award

January 2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Medical Doctor (MD)

Department

Medicine

First Advisor

Helen B. Treloar

Subject Area(s)

Neurosciences

Abstract

The Role of Lecticans in Olfactory Pathway Formation. Matthew Steven Rosenberg (Sponsored by Helen Treloar). Dept. of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT.

Olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) expressing the same odorant receptor (OR) project axons with remarkable specificity to the same glomeruli in the olfactory bulb (OB). Previously, ORs have been presumed necessary but insufficient to account fully for the glomerular targeting specificity. Extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules in the OB may offer cues for the prevention of axon ingrowth preceding glomerular formation. Heretofore data demonstrates 2 inhibitory ECM molecules, tenascin-C (TNC) and phosphacan are present in the developing OB in boundary-like patterns. This paper determines the expression of the lecticans, a family of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs) that has been identified as potentially providing inhibitory cues, in the developing OB and considers their possible role in axon growth regulation and glomerular formation. I conducted PCR, immunohistochemistry, and in situ hybridization studies to determine the presence of the lecticans in the developing olfactory bulb and epithelium as well as to characterize any expression. The data showed a spatiotemporal expression of the lecticans in the developing OB and OE and suggested a lectican role in axon guidance and glomerular formation.

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