About Dr. Featherstone's Research
The Featherstone lab identifies and provides initial characterization of genes required for nervous system development. Specifically, we look for things that control expression and/or localization of glutamate receptors, which mediate most fast cell-to-cell communication in the brain.
Our work uses fruit flies, mice, and a variety of powerful techniques, including molecular genetics and transgenics (to discover and manipulate proteins at the most basic level), recombinant nucleotide biology and gene expression assays (to clone genes and precisely measure gene expression), immunohistochemistry, confocal and electron microscopy (to determine where and when protein is localized), voltage-clamp synaptic electrophysiology (to measure the functional properties of receptors and overall synaptic efficacy), and sophisticated behavioral assays (to confirm that the molecular changes we see have behavioral significance). We have named and studied several previously uncharacterized genes, and routinely produce novel community reagents such as antibodies and mutants.
More information is available via our lab web page.
Kaiyun Chen, Antje Richlitzki, David E Featherstone, Martin Schwartzel, and Janet E Richmond. (2011) Tomosyn-dependent regulation of synaptic transmission is required for a late phase of associative odor memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA Nov 8:108(45):18482-7
Kaiyun Chen and David E. Featherstone. (2011) Pre and postsynaptic roles for Drosophila CASK. Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience 48(2):171-182
Subhashree Ganesan, Julie Karr, and David E. Featherstone. (2011) Drosophila glutamate receptor mRNA expression and mRNP particles. RNA Biology 1:8(5). [Sept]
David E. Featherstone. (2011) Glial SLC Transporters in Drosophila and Mice. GLIA 59(9):1351-1363.
Julie Karr, Vasia Vagin, Kaiyun Chen, Subhashree Ganesan, Oxana Olenkina, Vladimir Gvozdev, and David E. Featherstone. (2009) Regulation of glutamate receptor availability by microRNAs. Journal of Cell Biology 185(4): 685-697.
Yael Grosjean, Micheline Grillet, Hrvoje Augustin, Jean-Francois Ferveur, and David E. Featherstone. (2008) A glial amino acid transporter controls synapse strength and courtship in Drosophila. Nature Neuroscience 11(1): 54-61.
David E. Featherstone and Scott A. Shippy. (2008) Regulation of synaptic transmission by ambient extracellular glutamate. The Neuroscientist 14(2): 171-181.
Hrvoje Augustin/Yael Grosjean, Kaiyun Chen, Qi Sheng, and David E. Featherstone. (2007) Nonvesicular release of glutamate by glial xCT transporters suppresses glutamate receptor clustering in vivo. Journal of Neuroscience 27: 111-123.