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Department of Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology
Laboratory of Bioinformatics and Systems Biology
Laboratory of Calcium Binding Proteins
Laboratory of Epileptogenesis
Laboratory for Mechanisms of Transport Through Biomembranes
Laboratory of Molecular Basis of Brain Plasticity
Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology
Laboratory of Neurobiology of Development and Evolution
Laboratory of Neuroplasticity
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nencki.gov.pl » Working Groups » Department of Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology »
Laboratory of Neurobiology of Development and Evolution


Ruzanna L. DJAVADIAN, Katarzyna BARTKOWSKA, Marta GRABIEC (PhD student), Seweryn OLKOWICZ (PhD student), Aleksander MICHALSKI (PhD student)

Research profile

In our research we correlate information about development and evolution of the mammalian brain. Our lab investigates connections of the neocortical fields, thalamic nuclei and hippocampal complex in various mammalian species. We investigate also the rate of brain cell generation and death in various orders of mammals. This information is correlated with behavioral tests, known ecological specialization and lineage history of these species. We are searching for mechanisms of brain evolution and testing the hypothesis of the “mammalian cortical prototype”. In another line of research we investigate various aspects of development of the central nervous system, anatomy and behavior in the laboratory opossum, Monodelphis domestica, expanding knowledge about that laboratory species. We are also interested in the mechanisms of seasonal oscillations of the brain volume in shrews (Dehnel's effect), developmental plasticity of the nervous system and the influence of prenatal and neonatal stress on the development of brain and the whole animal.

Current research activities

  • Developmental sequence and mechanisms in the brain and retina of the laboratory opossum (Monodelphis domestica). The role of 5-HT1A receptors in the brain development;
  • Influence of prenatal and neonatal stress on the mouse brain development;
  • Comparison of behavioral mechanisms of the opossums, shrews and rodents. Spatial memory, fear and exploration, fear conditioning;
  • Adult neurogenesis in the brain of mammals and its correlation with their ecology and age;
  • Comparitive anatomy of connections of the entorhinal cortex and hippocampus. Evolution of the hippocampal system;
  • Coevolution of neocortical fields and thalamic nuclei in various mammalian species;
  • Mechanisms and consequences of the evolutionary reduction of the body and brain.

Selected publications

Bartkowska K., Djavadian R.L., Taylor J.R.E., Turlejski K. (2008) Generation, recruitment and death of brain cells throughout he life cycle of Sorex shrews (Lipotyphla). Eur. J. Neurosci. 27: 1710–1721

Bartkowska K., Paquin. A, Gauthier A.S., Kaplan D.R., Miller F.D. (2007) Trk signaling regulates neural precursor cell proliferation and differentiation during cortical development. Development. 134: 4369-4380.

Churchfield S., Rychlik L., Yavrouyan E., Turlejski K. (2006) First results on the feeding ecology of the Transcaucasian water shrew Neomys teres (Soricomorpha: Soricidae) from Armenia. Can. J. Zool. 84: 1853-1858.

Djavadian R., Bisti S., Maccarone R., Bartkowska K., Turlejski K. (2006) Development and plasticity of the retina in opossum Monodelphis domestica. Acta Neurobiol. Exp. 63: 179-188.

Djavadian R.L., Wielkopolska E., Turlejski K. (2005) Postnatal treatment with NAN-190 but not with 5-HT1A receptor agonists retards growth of the rat brain. Int. J. Dev. Neurosci. 23: 485-493.

Wesierska M., Walasek G., Kilijanek J., Djavadian R.L., Turlejski K. (2003) Behavior of the gray short-tailed opossum (Monodelphis domestica) in the open field and in response to a new object, in comparison with the rat. Behav. Brain Res. 143: 31-40.

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Published at: 2008-05-27 10:07

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