Mary A. Hynes

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alpha-Synuclein (alpha-Syn) is a 14 kDa protein of unknown function that has been implicated in the pathophysiology of Parkinson's disease (PD). Here, we show that alpha-Syn-/- mice are viable and fertile, exhibit intact brain architecture, and possess a normal complement of dopaminergic cell bodies, fibers, and synapses. Nigrostriatal terminals of(More)
During development, distinct classes of neurons are specified in precise locations along the dorso-ventral and anterior-posterior axes of the neural tube. We provide evidence that intersections of Shh, which is expressed along the ventral neural tube, and FGF8, which is locally produced at the mid/hindbrain boundary and in the rostral forebrain, create(More)
The protein Sonic hedgehog (Shh) controls patterning and growth during vertebrate development. Here we demonstrate that it binds Patched (vPtc), which has been identified as a tumour-suppressor protein in basal cell carcinoma, with high affinity. We show that Ptc can form a physical complex with a newly cloned vertebrate homologue of the Drosophila protein(More)
Basal-cell carcinomas (BCCs) are the commonest human cancer. Insight into their genesis came from identification of mutations in the PATCHED gene (PTCH) in patients with the basal-cell nevus syndrome, a hereditary disease characterized by multiple BCCs and by developmental abnormalities. The binding of Sonic hedgehog (SHH) to its receptor, PTCH, is thought(More)
A novel neurotrophic factor named Persephin that is approximately 40% identical to glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and neurturin (NTN) has been identified using degenerate PCR. Persephin, like GDNF and NTN, promotes the survival of ventral midbrain dopaminergic neurons in culture and prevents their degeneration after 6-hydroxydopamine(More)
Sonic hedgehog (Shh) is a putative morphogen secreted by the floor plate and notochord, which specifies the fate of multiple cell types in the ventral aspect of the vertebrate nervous system. Since in Drosophila the actions of Hh have been shown to be transduced by Cubitus interruptus (Ci), a zinc finger transcription factor, we examined whether a(More)
Midbrain dopaminergic neurons, whose loss in adults results in Parkinson's disease, can be specified during embryonic development by a contact-dependent signal from floor plate cells. Here we show that the amino-terminal product of Sonic hedgehog autoproteolysis (SHH-N), an inductive signal expressed by floor plate cells, can induce dopaminergic neurons in(More)
Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) exhibits potent effects on survival and function of midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons in a variety of models. Although other growth factors expressed in the vicinity of developing DA neurons have been reported to support survival of DA neurons in vitro, to date none of these factors duplicate the potent(More)
The notochord and floor plate contribute to patterning the ventral neural tube in part by expressing a diffusible factor that induces motoneurons. To determine the mechanisms that direct the development of other classes of ventral neurons, we studied the development of dopaminergic neurons that reside near motoneurons in the ventral midbrain. We provide(More)
RET is a member of the receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) superfamily, which can transduce signalling by glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and neurturin (NTN) in cultured cells. In order to determine whether in addition to being sufficient, RET is also necessary for signalling by these growth factors, we studied the response to GDNF and NTN of(More)