Nicholas Gaiano, PhD
Scientific Review Officer at NIH RKL2 BG RM 5178
Education and Training:
- 2/1997-3/2002: Postdoctoral Fellow, Gordon Fishell Lab, Skirball Inst., NYU School of Medicine, NY, NY
- 1/1997: Ph.D. in Biology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA
- 5/1991: B.S. in Biochemistry, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
Current or Past Study:
Nick Gaiano joined the Department of Neurology at Johns Hopkins Med as an Assistant Professor in 2002, and is a member of the Graduate Program in Neuroscience. He is also a member of the recently established Institute for Cell Engineering (ICE) in the Program in Neurobiology. Current studies in the lab examine the development of the mammalian forebrain using the mouse as the model system. In particular, the lab focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms that regulate neural stem cell maintenance, proliferation, and the specification of post-mitotic cell types. Recent work has found that the Notch and FGF signaling pathways are intimately involved in these processes, and ongoing studies are continuing to pursue these pathways among others. Both in vivo and in vitro approaches are being undertaken to pursue this work. An ultrasound image-guided injection system is used to introduce viral vectors into the developing brain in utero prior to the onset of neurogenesis. The fate of genetically modified cells is then examined in vivo, or these cells are isolated using fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) for in vitro analysis. Close coordination of both loss-of-function and gain-of-function studies, with in vivo and in vitro assays, should provide greater insight into the molecular and cellular regulation of cell-fate specification during brain development.