A.B., Princeton University
Ph.D., Duke University
Our laboratory studies the molecular genetic basis of human diseases, particularly Usher syndrome, the leading cause of combined deafness and blindness, as well as other diseases of the eye and ear.
We use zebrafish and a combination of anatomical, physiological, molecular, and genetic techniques. The goal of our research is to identify disease-causing genes, to elucidate what goes wrong during disease, and to develop preclinical trials for new therapies.
Current research focuses on developing models of human disease. In particular, we are making and studying models of Usher syndrome
Westerfield, M., and J.S. Eisen. (1985). The growth of motor axons in the spinal cord of Xenopus embryos. Devel. Biol. 109:96-121.
Powell, S.L., and M. Westerfield. (1984). The absence of specific dye coupling among frog spinal cord neurons. Brain Res. 294:9-14.
Westerfield, M., and S.L. Powell. (1983). Selective reinnervation of limb muscles by regenerating frog motor axons. Devel. Brain Res. 10:301-304.
Frank, E., and M. Westerfield. (1983). Development of sensory-motor synapses in the spinal cord of the frog. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 343:593-610.
Moore, J.W., N. Stockbridge and M. Westerfield. (1983). On the site of impulse initiation in a neurone. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 336:301-311.
Moore, J.W., and M. Westerfield. (1983). Action potential propagation and threshold parameters in inhomogeneous regions of squid axons. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 336:285-300.
Westerfield, M., and E. Frank. (1982). Specificity of electrical coupling among neurons innervating forelimb muscles of the adult bullfrog. J. Neurophysiol. 48:904-913.
Westerfield., M., and R.W. Joyner. (1982). Postsynaptic factors controlling the shape of potentials at the squid giant synapse.
Frank, E., and M. Westerfield. (1982). The formation of appropriate central and peripheral connexions by foreign sensory neurones of the bullfrog. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 324:495-505.
Frank, E., and M. Westerfield. (1982). Synaptic organization of sensory and motor neurones innervating triceps brachii muscles in the bullfrog. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 324:479-494.
Joyner, R.W., and M. Westerfield. (1982). The effects of rectification on synaptic efficacy. Biophys. J. 38:3946.
Westerfield, M. and H.D. Lux. (1982). Calcium activated potassium conductance noise in snail neurons. J. Neurobiol. 12:507-517.
Gage, P.W., J.W. Moore and M. Westerfield. (1976) An octopus toxin,
maculotoxin, selectively blocks sodium current in squid axon.
J. Physiol. (Lond.). 259:427-443.
Joyner, R.W., M. Westerfield and J.W. Moore. (1980). The effects of cellular geometry on current flow during action potential propagation. Biophys. J. 31:183-194.
Westerfield, M., J.W. Moore, Y.S. Kim and G. Padilla. (1977). How Gymnodinium breve red tide toxin produces repetitive firing in squid axons. Amer. J. Physiol. 232:23-29.
Westerfield, M., and H.D. Lux. (1979). Two components of membrane conductance noise in snail neuronal somata. Neurosci. Lett. 11:75-80.
Westerfield, M., R.W. Joyner and J.W. Moore. (1978). Temperature sensitive conduction failure at axon branch points. J. Neurophysiol. 41:1-8.
Joyner, R.W., M. Westerfield, J.W. Moore and N. Stockbridge. (1978). A
numerical method to model excitable cells. Biophys. J. 22:155-170.
Ramon, F., J.W. Moore, R.W. Joyner and M. Westerfield (1976) Squid giant axon as a model for the neuron soma? Biophys. J. 16:953-963.
Kim, Y.S., L. Mandel, M. Westerfield, G. Padilla and J.W. Moore. (1975) Effect of Gymnodinium breve toxin(s) on frog skin and giant axon of the squid. Environ. Lett. 9:255-264.