Grant Mastick

( University of Nevada, Reno )


(775) 784-6168
  • Institution:University of Nevada, Reno
  • Departments: Biology
  • Research Fields: Neuroscience, Genetics, Cell Biology, Developmental Biology
  • Disciplines: Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Biology, General, Cell Biology and Anatomy, Developmental Biology and Embryology, Genetics, Neurobiology and Neurosciences
  • Location:Washoe County
  • Funding:EPSCoR - Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research


To build a brain, the embryo must produce a spatially organized array of a vast number of neurons, then interconnect them. Our research group uses genetic and molecular approaches in mouse and chick embryos to investigate the functions of specific genes in brain development. This research has implications for the molecular therapy of neurological disease and injury, and is funded by the National Institutes of Health.

Our current research is on the migration of neurons and their axons through the developing brain. We investigate how molecular signals guide axons to migrate precisely long distances on longitudinal pathways, how cranial nerves grow out to connect to muscles, and also how neuron cell bodies settle in specific positions. Our studies focus on a system of signals, the Slit/Robo repellents and the Netrin attractants, to understand the mechanisms by which opposing signals are integrated by neurons.