Aelon Ketema Samuel

A Knock-out Experiment on a Neuronal Boolean Model

Class of 2022


  • Education
    • Dandii Boru School, Highschool Diploma, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 2018
    • The College of Wooster, BA in Neurobiology
    • The College of Wooster, Minor in Studio-Art, 2022
  • Professional experience
    • Neuro-radiology Intern, Wudassie Diagnostic Center, A.A, Ethiopia
    • Website manager, Black in Neuro
    • The College of Wooster Libraries, Science Library Assistant
    • The College of Wooster, Religious studies Department, Course Design Assistant
    • The College of Wooster, Building Monitor, Cashier, Retail Assistant

IS Thesis Abstract

Neuronal cell cycle is a process that is key in regulating the resulting neuronal fate and inducing different aberrant behaviors in post-mitotic neurons like cell cycle re-entry. We modelled a neuronal cell cycle with corresponding cell fate. In our previous models, cell cycle re-entry was met with cell death and apoptosis through mitotic catastrophe. While performing knock-out experiments and forced expressions on cell cycle regulatory molecules, we discovered that aberrant cell cycle re-entry commits to apoptosis through E2F1 mediated cell death rather than mitotic cell death. We also learnt that cells occasionally re-enter the cell cycle to get into a protective polyploid state to avoid cell death. In an effort to correct this pathway we discovered that the pathway for cell cycle re-entry can be corrected by introducing new pathways that are able to induce apoptosis independent from the MAPK pathway. Future studies can focus on enabling the model to incorporate additional pathways that can induce a certain cellular fate in order for the model to be more robust and realistic.

Figure 1. Molecular network of neuronal progenitors and neuronal differentiation
Figure 2. Aelon presenting her work at the Winter Q-Bio Conference, February, 2022


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