January 5, 2012

Stanford’s Südhof to speak on synapse development, function

Thomas Südhof, M.D., the Avram Goldstein Professor of Molecular and Cellular Physiology at Stanford University School of Medicine, will deliver the first Discovery Lecture of 2012 on Thursday, Jan. 12.

Thomas Südhof, M.D.

His talk, “Neurexins: from synapse formation to synapse function,” will begin at 4 p.m. in 208 Light Hall.
Südhof’s laboratory investigates how synapses — the specialized junctions between neurons that are key to communication among these cells — develop and function, with an emphasis on the “presynaptic” neuron (which releases chemical neurotransmitters) and the role of cell adhesion molecules (like neurexins and neuroligins).

Mutations in these molecules have been observed in neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism, and neurodegenerative disorders.

Südhof is a member of the Institute of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute International Investigator.

The lecture is part of the Allan D. Bass Endowed Lecture Series and is sponsored by the Department of Pharmacology.

For a complete schedule of the Discovery Lecture series and archived video of previous lectures, go to www.mc.vanderbilt.edu/discoveryseries.