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Don Cleveland

Affiliation: UCSD Ludwig Institute
Professor of Medicine, Neuroscience and Cellular and Molecular Medicine
Phone: 858-534-7811


Dr. Cleveland received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Princeton. Following his post-doctoral work at University of California, San Francisco, Dr. Cleveland was a professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Cleveland joined the Ludwig Institute at UCSD in 1995, where he is currently director of their laboratory of cell biology.

Research Summary

Dr. Cleveland's laboratory has focused in two major directions.

Molecular genetics and cell biology of mammalian chromosome movement and spindle assembly during mitosis: Our interests are in deciphering the mitotic checkpoint, major mechanism in mammals that insures delivery of every chromosome to each daughter cell during mitosis. We use in vitro extracts that can reproduce the cell cycle in vitro as well as gene targeted mice to identify the principles of chromosome segregation. A key aspect of this is defining "what is a centromere". We are using assembly of purified components and molecular genetics in cells and mice to define the nature of this mark.

Molecular genetics of axonal growth and motor neuron disease: Using transgenic and gene targeted mice, the principles that support axonal growth are being identified as are ways in which errors in the scaffolding structure within axons lead to disease. Similar approaches are being used to determine mechanisms underlying the inherited forms of the most prominent adult motor neuron disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, the hallmark of which is the selective death of motor neurons.


References From PubMed (NCBI)


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©2008 UCSD/Burnham Molecular Pathology Graduate Program