Wednesday, April 27, 2005
Industrial Outreach Program, Harvard University (Cambridge, MA)
Tightly-focused femtosecond laser pulses of a few nanojoules sever individual dendrites in the nematode worm C. elegans. Quantification of the resulting behavioral deficits identifies the contribution of the dissected structures. The dissection has submicrometer resolution with no collateral damage, permitting precise studies on live animals. Future work include an examination of the molecular basis of neurodegeneration that has application to diseases such as Parkinsons and Alzheimers.