We are interested in how individual synapses, neurons and circuits dynamically adjust their transmission properties in response to changes in network activity. To accomplish this, neurons signal not only unidirectionally via classical pre to post-synaptic transmission, but also bidirectionally via pre or post-synaptic release of neuropeptides and neurotrophins. This bidirectional channel of communication is essential to modulate synapse and circuit strength, via regulation of distinct membrane fusion events on both sides of the synapse, including synaptic vesicle exocytosis, and post-synaptic receptor and adhesion molecule recycling. We investigate the mechanisms by which these trans-synaptic signaling events are regulated at the single synapse, single neuron and network levels, using live imaging, electrophysiology, and biochemistry in neuronal cultures and brain slices. Our goal is to understand how neurons communicate changes in activity to affect circuit function, and ultimately behavior, during learning and memory, or to counteract aberrant brain states such as seizure activity.
Please see also: http://www.eni.gwdg.de/index.php?id=326
Liu H., Chapman ER., Dean C. (2013) "Self" versus "Non-Self" Connectivity Dictates Properties of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity. PLoS One , 8 (4): e62414.
Dean C., Dunning FM., Liu H., Bomba-Warczak E., Martens H., Bharat V., Ahmed S., Chapman ER. (2012) Axonal and dendritic synaptotagmin isoforms revealed by a pHluorin-syt functional screen. Mol. Biol. Cell. , 23 (9): 1715-27.
Dean C., Liu H., Staudt T., Stahlberg MA., Vingill S., Bückers J., Kamin D., Engelhardt J., Jackson MB., Hell SW., Chapman ER. (2012) Distinct subsets of syt-IV/ BDNF vesicles are sorted to axons versus dendrites and recruited to synapses by activity. J. Neurosci ., 32 (16): 5398-5413.
Dean C., Liu H., Dunning FM., Chang PY., Jackson MB., Chapman ER. (2009) Synaptotagmin-IV modulates synaptic function and LTP by regulating BDNF release. Nat Neurosci ., 12 (6): 767-76.
Zhang Z., Bhalla A., Dean C., Chapman ER., Jackson MB. (2009) Synaptotagmin IV: a multifunctional regulator of peptidergic nerve terminals. Nat. Neurosci. , 12(2):163-71.
2012 DFG Grant: Function of synaptotagmin isoforms in dense core vesicle fusion, ENI (until today)
2012 ENC-Erasmus Mundus (until today)
2012 DFG SFB 889: The role of synaptotagmins in olfactory processing, ENI (until today)
2011 European Research Council Starting Independent Researcher Grant SytActivity, ENI (until today)
2010 Sofja Kovalevskaja Alexander von Humboldt award, ENI (until today)
2009 Epilepsy Foundation fellowship, University of Wisconsin, Madison (until 2010)
2005 NIH NRSA fellowship, University of Wisconsin, Madison (until 2008)
1999 Neuroscience Training Grant, University of California, Berkeley (until 2002)