Our human brain contains billions of neurons and glial cells grouped together into functional circuits. We know that these cellular components of the brain are formed during development at distinct places, and at different time points. Our research focuses on neurogenesis and neural migration during brain development. Defects in those processes lead to neurodevelopmental disorders such as intellectual disability, epilepsy, autism, and schizophrenia in human. We make mouse and stem cell models of such disorders to understand how the mammalian brain is built. In particular, we study how transcription factors influence the fate determination of different cell types in the forebrain. Furthermore, we study how cell-cell contact and signaling is integrated in the developing brain during processes of neurogenesis and neural migration. Besides gaining fundamental insight into mammalian brain development, our research contributes to the development of model systems that can be used as platforms for drug discovery.
- van den Berghe V., Stappers E., Seuntjens E. 2014. How Cell-Autonomous Is Neuronal Migration in the Forebrain? Molecular Cross-Talk at the Cell Membrane. The Neuroscientist : a review journal bringing neurobiology, neurology and psychiatry. vol.20 (6) , pp. 571-575
- van den Berghe V., Stappers E., Vandesande B., Dimidschstein J., Kroes R., Francis A., Conidi A., Lesage F., Dries R., Cazzola S., Berx G., Kessaris N., Vanderhaeghen P., van Ijcken W., Grosveld F., Goossens S., Haigh J., Fishell G., Goffinet A., Aerts S., Huylebroeck D., Seuntjens E. 2013. Directed migration of cortical interneurons depends on the cell-autonomous action of sip1. Neuron. vol.77 (1) , pp. 70-82
- Segklia A., Seuntjens E., Elkouris M., Tsalavos S., Stappers E., Mitsiadis T., Huylebroeck D., Remboutsika E., Graf D. 2012. Bmp7 regulates the survival, proliferation, and neurogenic properties of neural progenitor cells during corticogenesis in the mouse. PLoS One. vol.7 (3) , pp. e34088-
- Seuntjens E., Nityanandam A., Miquelajauregui A., Debruyn J., Stryjewska A., Goebbels S., Nave K., Huylebroeck D., Tarabykin V. 2009. Sip1 regulates sequential fate decisions by feedback signaling from postmitotic neurons to progenitors. Nature Neuroscience. vol.12 (11) , pp. 1373-1380