Steven J. Mennerick, Ph.D.
Molecular Cell Biology Program
G13 Biotechnology Building
neurobiology, synapse biology, receptor, ion channel, glutamate transmission, GABA transmission
Physiology of glutamate and GABA neurotransmission in the CNS
We study chemical excitation and inhibition by neurotransmitters in the central nervous system. Chemical transmission requires a fine balance as over-excitation or over-inhibition is detrimental to function and survival of neurons. In one project, we are studying the role of astrocytes in supporting the development and maintenance of chemical transmission. One branch of this project is studying the role of astrocytes in neuroenergetics. Another major emphasis is a collaborative effort to understand the mechanisms by which endogenous neuroactive steroids directly modulate GABA and glutamate receptor function. A final project uses a foreign dopamine-gated ion channel to interrogate and control dopamine transmission. For our studies we use electrophysiological, molecular, chemical biology and imaging techniques applied to neurons in culture, to brain slices, and to animals.
Sobieski C, Jiang X, Crawford DC, Mennerick S (2015) Loss of Local Astrocyte Support Disrupts Action Potential Propagation and Glutamate Release Synchrony from Unmyelinated Hippocampal Axon Terminals In Vitro. J Neurosci 35:11105-11117.
Kress GJ, Shu H-J, Yu A, Taylor A, Benz A, Harmon S, Mennerick S (2014) Fast phasic release properties of dopamine studied with a channel biosensor. J Neurosci: In Press.
Paul SM, Doherty JJ, Robichaud AJ, Belfort GM, Chow BY, Hammond RS, Crawford DC, Linsenbardt AJ, Shu HJ, Izumi Y, Mennerick SJ, Zorumski CF (2013) The major brain cholesterol metabolite 24(S)-hydroxycholesterol is a potent allosteric modulator of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors. J Neurosci 33:17290-17300. PMCID: 3812502
Crawford DC, Jiang X, Taylor A, Mennerick S (2012) Astrocyte-derived thrombospondins mediate the development of hippocampal presynaptic plasticity in vitro. J Neurosci 32:13100-13110. PMCID: 3475988
Crawford DC, Chang CY, Hyrc KL, Mennerick S (2011) Calcium-independent inhibitory G-protein signaling induces persistent presynaptic muting of hippocampal synapses. J Neurosci 31:979-991. PMCID: 3311872
Chisari M, Eisenman LN, Covey DF, Mennerick S, Zorumski CF (2010) The sticky issue of neurosteroids and GABAA receptors. Trends Neurosci 33:299-306. PMCID: 2902671
Last Updated: 8/25/2016 11:51:53 AM
hippocampal neuron cultured in isolation atop an astrocyte (blue). Dendrites are green and presynaptic terminals are red.