CONICET PhD fellow
Director: Beatriz L. Caputto
PhD Thesis Topic
Role of c-Fos in neuronal differentiation
In our laboratory, we obtained the first evidences that show that c-Fos, in addition to its activity as a transcriptional factor, has the capacity to regulate a key metabolism for membrane biogenesis at the cell cytoplasm: c-Fos associates to the endoplasmic reticulum, where it activates phospholipid synthesis in events such as proliferation, differentiation and cell growth. The aim of this project is to advance on the knowledge of the molecular mechanisms through which c-Fos exerts this critical function in the complex events of neuronal growth and differentiation, which require a higher rate of membrane biogenesis. To reach this purpose, we study the requirement of this protein for the differentiation of rat hippocampal neurons and evaluate the subcellular site where lipid synthesis takes place. Also, we intend to determine if c-Fos interacts with specific enzymes of phospholipid synthesis and try to establish dynamic aspects of this process: ie if the biosynthetic machinery is transported through neuronal processes to reach a branching point where a secondary process is growing or if the machinery must arrive first for these branches to start growing.