Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Gregory S Walsh

Second Advisor

Jennifer Stewart

Third Advisor

Amanda Dickinson

Fourth Advisor

James Lister


The goal of this study was to identify critical regions of a novel gene, Nance-Horan syndrome-like 1b (nhsl1b). It was previously discovered that C-terminal truncation of the Nhsl1b protein in nhsl1b mutants resulted in a loss of migration in the facial motor neurons of the hindbrain (Walsh et al. 2011). As nhsl1b expresses many isoforms, multiple targets were investigated in order to determine which transcript bears the largest impact on the motor neurons. Using confocal microscopy to observe immunostained embryos, we examined a mutation in an nhsl1b transcript that encodes a WHD, a domain that is known to function within the actin nucleation and polymerization pathways. In situ hybridization and injection of antisense morpholino oligonucleotides indicate that it is not the WHD but another transcript (ex1bnhsl1b) that is necessary for migration. The control experiments for rescuing the mutant phenotype have successfully been performed, but inducing expression of full length nhsl1b in the nhsl1b mutants is proving difficult.


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