Shaping Sensory Signaling

December 14, 2021 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Piali Sengupta, hosted by Anne West
sengupta headshot

Duke Neurobiology welcomes Piali Sengupta, Ph.D., Harold and Bernice Davis Chair in Aging and Neurodegenerative Disease, and Professor of Biology at Brandeis University. Dr. Sengupta will present "Shaping Sensory Signaling" live in 103 Bryan Research with a simulcast on Zoom. Email d.shipman@duke.edu for connection details.
ABSTRACT: Primary cilia are microtubule-based sensory organelles that are now known to be present not just on sensory neurons, but on nearly all mammalian cell types including on neurons and glia in the brain through adult stages. Cilia house signal transduction molecules, and disruption of cilia function is causal to a range of diseases collectively termed ciliopathies. Ciliopathies are characterized by sensory deficits but also by defects in neurogenesis and synaptic functions. Although cilia on most neurons are simple rod-like structures, sensory neuron cilia exhibit diverse and complex cell type-specific morphologies. How specialized cilia morphologies contribute to regulating sensory neuron functions is unclear. I will discuss ongoing unpublished work describing the role of cilia architecture in shaping olfactory neuron response profiles in C. elegans. I will also briefly discuss recently published work on a new role for ciliary neuropeptidergic signaling in the continuous regulation of excitability in the postnatal rat neocortex.