PiN Faculty Member - Paola Arlotta, PhD

Paola Arlotta, PhD

Golub Family Professor of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology

Harvard University
Dept. of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology
7 Divinity Avenue, Sherman Fairchild 358C
Cambridge, MA 02138
Tel: 617-496-9810
Fax: 617-496-3763
Visit my lab page here.

In my lab research, I am interested in understanding the mechanisms that govern the fate specification and development of distinct subtypes of projection neurons of the cerebral cortex, and in understanding the principles that govern the integration of excitatory projection neurons and inhibitory interneurons into local cortical microcircuitry. In the long term my work aims at developing approaches to aid neuronal regeneration in the context of neurodegenerative diseases of the cortical output circuitry, and at modulating neuronal function in psychiatric diseases affecting the cerebral cortex. A recent interest of my laboratory has been the modeling of human neuropsychiatric disease using human brain organoids that are derived from induced pluripotent stem cells. Our long-term goal is to generate in vitro models that resemble as closely as possible the cellular complexity, tissue architecture and local connectivity of the developing human cerebral cortex and that can become a platform for understanding higher-order circuit function and dysfunction affected in neurodevelopmental cortical disease. By large-scale single-cell sequencing we have shown that human brain organoids can generate a broad diversity of cells, including subpopulations of neurons and progenitors of the cerebral cortex, which are molecularly related to known endogenous human cell classes. We have also developed the first long-term culture of human brain organoids (grown for over one year), which enables development of extensive cellular diversity, neuronal maturation (including the formation of dendritic spines), and the generation of spontaneously active neuronal networks sensitive to sensory stimuli.

Last Update: 9/16/2020


For a complete listing of publications click here.



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