Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
The formation of the mammalian cerebral cortex is a complex multi-tiered process that involves three major milestones: 1) neural induction and folding of the neuroepithelium, 2) areal patterning and generation of various progenitor types, and 3) corticogenesis. Our current understanding of the molecular and cellular basis of cortical development comes largely from mouse studies due to the genetic tractability of this model system. However, as primate studies have shown, the primate brain is unique in terms of its progenitor and neuronal composition, cortical areas, scale, and gene expression. Limitations in the availability of non-human primate and human fetal material, the longer timescale of developmental processes, as well as the ethical considerations involved preclude direct experimental observations in both these organisms. However, human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) allow a window into early human fetal development and permit experimental manipulation of developmental events, thereby enabling molecular and cellular dissection of corticogenesis.
Ozair, Mohammad Zeeshan, "A Reductionist Approach to Modeling Human Corticogenesis" (2015). Student Theses and Dissertations. 493.