RESEARCH INTERESTS

TED M. DAWSON

My laboratory uses genetic, cell biological and biochemical approaches to explore the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other neurologic disorders.  We also investigate several discrete mechanisms involved in cell death including the role of nitric oxide as an endogenous messenger, the function of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 and apoptosis inducing factor in cell death, and how endogenous cell survival mechanisms protect neurons from death. 

VALINA L. DAWSON

The brain is the most complex organ in the body and allows us to interact with the world around us. When neurons are lost due to trauma or disease there is a significant loss of function.  In order to treat patients suffering neurologic dysfunction it will be necessary to accomplish several integrated goals including: (1) understanding the cellular death signaling pathways to reveal potential drugable targets for pharmaceutical intervention, (2) understanding endogenous survival pathways to learn how to induce these pathways to provide complimentary or alternative therapeutic targets, (3) to learn how nerves regenerate and find their appropriate targets, (4) to restore full function it may be necessary to replace the neurons that have been lost.

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