Understanding the mechanisms of axon regeneration is of great importance to the development of therapeutic treatments for spinal cord injury or stroke. Axon regeneration has long been studied in diverse vertebrate and invertebrate models, but until recently had not been analyzed in the genetically tractable model organism Caenorhabditis elegans. The small size, simple neuroanatomy, and transparency of C. elegans allows single fluorescently labeled axons to be severed in live animals using laser microsurgery. Many neurons in C. elegans are capable of regenerative regrowth, and can in some cases re-establish functional connections. Large-scale genetic screens have begun to elucidate the genetic basis of axon regrowth.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology