E-mail: rosoffw [at] georgetown [dot] edu
Dr. Will Rosoff received his B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Neurobiology at S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook, and a Ph.D. in Cellular Molecular Pharmacology at S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook. He first collaborated with the Department of Physics from 2000 to 2004, when he accepted a joint fellowship in the Georgetown Department of Neuroscience with Dr. Geoff Goodhill and Dr. Jeffrey Urbach. After an appointment as a Senior Research Officer at The Queensland Brain Institute in Australia from 2005 to 2007, Dr. Rosoff joined the Department of Physics in The Laboratory of Dynamic Imaging.
Dr. Rosoff’s primary research interests are development of novel assays, and in-vitro environments to examine axon guidance, growth cone behavior, and growth cone interaction with fabricated environments, including fluorescently labeled thin 3-D fibrillar collagen. Growth cones have been typically observed on 2-D glass substrates. Although this affords easy observations of the cytoskeletal mechanisms underlying growth cone turning and axon guidance, it does not likely approach or resemble the in-vivo environment that developing neurons inhabit. To that end, Dr. Rosoff and Dr. Urbach have developed a novel in-vitro system, which more closely approaches the in-vivo environment. Most notably, the ability to create defined gradients of chemotropic factors in 3-D collagen cultures. Moreover, fabricated thin 3–D, relatively 2–D substrates, and narrow lanes which approximate 1-D structures can be used to address growth cone responses to their physical environment that are difficult to observe in–vivo.
My current research involves the study of growth cone dynamics, motility, and traction force generation. Projects have included transfection of primary neurons for GFP-actin visualization to examine retrograde actin flow during growth cone advancement, and the distribution of adhesion proteins in growth cones from different neuronal populations (CNS vs PNS). I am performing traction force microscopy on growth cones with in situ immunofluorescence in order to examine tubulin engorgement of filopodia, various adhesion proteins, or markers for an engaged adhesion “clutch” with the final stress fields of a traction force run.
- Koch D, Rosoff WJ, Jiang J, Geller HM, & Urbach JS. Strength in the Periphery: Growth Cone Biomechanics and Substrate Rigidity Response in Peripheral and Central Nervous System Neurons. Biophys J, 2012 Feb, 102(3): 452–460.
- Kelly, TA, Katagiri Y, Vartanian KB, Kumar P, Chen II, Rosoff WJ, Urbach JS, Geller HM. Localized alteration of microtubule polymerization in growth cones at inhibitory boundaries J Neurosci Res. 2010 Nov 1;88(14):3024-33.
- Mortimer D, Feldner J, Vaughan T, Vetter I, Pujic Z, Rosoff WJ, Burrage K, Dayan P, Richards LJ, Goodhill GJ. Bayesian model predicts the response of axons to molecular gradients. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Jun 23;106(25):10296-301.
- Graves CE, McAllister RG, Rosoff WJ, Urbach JS. Optical neuronal guidance in three dimensional matrices. J Neurosci Methods. 2009 May 15;179(2):278-83.
- Pujic Z, Giacomantonio CE, Unni D, Rosoff WJ, Goodhill GJ. Analysis of the growth cone turning assay for studying axon guidance. J Neurosci Methods. 2008 May 30;170(2):220-8.
- Xu J, Rosoff WJ, Urbach JS, Goodhill GJ. Adaptation Is Not Required To Explain The Long-Term Response Of Axons To Molecular Gradients. Development. 2005 Oct;132(20):4545-52.
- Rosoff WJ, McAllistar RG, Esrick MA, Goodhill GJ, Urbach JS. Generating controlled molecular gradients in 3D gels. Biotechnol Bioeng. 2005 Sep 20;91(6):754-9.
- Rosoff WJ, Urbach JS, Esrick MA, McAllister RG, Richards LJ, Goodhill GJ. A new chemotaxis assay shows the extreme sensitivity of axons to molecular gradients. Nat Neurosci. 2004 Jun;7(6):678-82. Epub 2004 May 25. Erratum in: Nat Neurosci. 2004 Jul;7(7):785. Commented on by Narasimhan K. Assaying axon sensitivity. http://www.nature.com/neuro/journal/v7/n6/full/nn0604-574.html
- Rosoff WJ, Swope SL. Role for cellular Src kinase in myoblast proliferation. J Cell Physiol. 2002 Dec;193(3):328-39.