Paul C. Letourneau, PhD

Professor Emeritus, Department of Neuroscience

Paul C. Letourneau

Contact Info

Office Phone 612-624-5999

Office Address:
4-160B Jackson Hall

Lab Address:
4-160/164 Jackson Hall


Research Summary/Interests

Developmental neurobiology

Research in Dr. Letourneau's laboratory is directed at understanding how nerve fibers grow and how the complex circuits of neuronal connections are formed during embryogenesis. Our goal is to understand how the intrinsic mechanisms that regulate the motile activity of extending axons is regulated by extrinsic molecules of the local environment. These molecules are guidance cues that define the pathways of axonal growth from neuronal cell bodies to synaptic targets. The methods we use to pursue this goal include neuronal cell culture, videomicroscopy, fluorescence microscopy, biochemical analysis of proteins, use of mutant mice, gene transfection and electroporation.


For a list of publications, see PubMed.

  • Marsick BM, San Miguel-Ruiz JE, Letourneau PC. Activation of ezrin/radixin/moesin mediates attractive growth cone guidance through regulation of growth cone actin and adhesion receptors. J Neurosci. 2012;32(1):282-96.
  • Marsick BM, Roche FK, Letourneau PC. Repulsive axon guidance cues ephrin-A2 and slit3 stop protrusion of the growth cone leading margin concurrently with inhibition of ADF/cofilin and ERM proteins. Cytoskeleton (Hoboken). 2012;69(7):496-505.
  • Marsick BM, Letourneau PC. Labeling F-actin barbed ends with rhodamine-actin in permeabilized neuronal growth cones. J Vis Exp. 2011;(49).
  • Marsick BM, Flynn KC, Santiago-Medina M, Bamburg JR, Letourneau PC. Activation of ADF/cofilin mediates attractive growth cone turning toward nerve growth factor and netrin-1. Dev Neurobiol. 2010;70(8):565-88.