Adventures in Neural Plasticity, Aging, and Neurodegenerative Disorders Aboard the CWC Beagle

Mark P. Mattson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This article recounts some of the scientific endeavors of Carl W. Cotman (CWC) during his journeys through the cellular circuitry of the mammalian brain. I have selected for consideration his findings that have been an important impetus for my own research; in several cases our different experiments have provided complementary data to support an hypothesis. Three examples are (i) Carl's studies of the roles of glutamate in synaptic transmission and plasticity in the adult brain and my studies of how glutamate regulates neurite outgrowth and cell survival in brain development; (ii) his and our studies of the mechanisms whereby amyloid β-peptide damages and kills neurons; and (iii) Carl's evidence that physical activity regulates neurotrophin levels in the brain and our evidence that dietary restriction has similar effects and is neuroprotective. In case you have not yet realized how I chose a title for this article it is because Carl has a (very distant) connection with Charles Darwin-Darwin sailed on a vessel called the Beagle and Carl has studied beagle dogs, establishing them as a model for understanding the neurobiology of human brain aging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1631-1637
Number of pages7
JournalNeurochemical Research
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Apoptosis
  • Glutamate
  • Neurotrophic factor
  • Synaptic plasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry


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