Mandell, James W.

James W. Mandell

James W. Mandell

Primary Appointment

Associate Professor, Pathology


  • AB, Biology, Cornell University
  • PhD, Neurobiology, Cornell University
  • MD, Medicine, Cornell University
  • Postdoc, Neuroscience, University of Virginia

Contact Information

MR 5 3220
Charlottesville, VA 22908
Telephone: 924-2316

Research Interests

Mechanisms of Brain Astroglial Activation in Neural Injury

Research Description

Astrocytes are the most numerous cell type in the brain and perform multiple functions

in development and maturity. These cells, also known as astroglia, respond to

diverse forms of neural injury with a complex but poorly understood phenotypic

change, termed reactive astrogliosis. Like the immune response, astrogliosis has

both beneficial and detrimental consequences. The response is classically defined

by cell hypertrophy and process extension, glial filament upregulation, and in

some cases, proliferation and migration. MAP kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways

were classically characterized as effectors of mitogenic and stress stimuli, but

are recently implicated in the regulation of cell motility. Our preliminary in

vitro data indicate that astroglial process extension and migration are differentially

modulated by the ERKMAPK and the p38MAPK pathways. The broad objective of the

proposed research program is to define specific roles for and mechanisms by which

these two MAPK modules modulate the morphology and motility of reactive astroglia.

Experiments employ established in vitro and in vivo techniques as well as Cre/lox

conditional gene inactivation approaches. It is anticipated that knowledge gained

from these studies will lead to a greater understanding of astroglial involvement

in neurological diseases, and lead to development of targeted therapies to therapeutically

modulate astrogliosis.

Selected Publications