Brian Rash, PhD

Associate Research Scientist in Neuroscience

Research Interests

Anatomy; Brain; Cell Biology; Chemicals and Drugs; Disorders of Environmental Origin; Embryo Research; Embryology; Fetal Research; Genetic Research; Nervous System Malformations; Neurogenesis; Neurosciences; Optogenetics; Stem Cells

Research Summary

The goal of my research is to understand how the brain develops and to investigate the cellular, genetic, and environmental mechanisms of cognitive neurodevelopmental disorders. I utilize a variety of approaches including multiphoton optogenetic and computational methods to study how cortical stem cells, known as radial glial cells (RGCs), proliferate and differentiate into post-mitotic neurons, as well as how these new neurons begin to form neural networks. Usage of these techniques advances our understanding of the inner workings of RGCs that regulate cortical growth and circuit formation (see Rash BG et al., 2016, Science Advances). Current research aims to determine the subcellular calcium dynamics of RGCs, their relation to mitochondrial and cytoskeletal activity, and how this could regulate neurogenesis and the migration of newborn neurons out of the stem cell niche. Understanding how these processes can be disrupted by environmental/maternal factors, including metabolic disorders and the usage of medications or other drugs during pregnancy, will be important in the prevention of childhood neurological disorders.

Activities

  • Columnar organization of calcium dynamic activity during cortical development Trondheim, Norway (2013 - 2013)

Selected Publications

See list of PubMed publications

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Contact Info

Brian Rash, PhD

Curriculum Vitae