The Beattie Lab investigates the biological basis of motoneuron diseases with a focus on spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Lab members are also interested in the genetic and molecular mechanisms that promote motoneuron development, such as the cues that guide motor axons to their target muscles and the formation of the connections between motoneurons and muscle. The lab has also recently started a project modeling glioblastoma to characterize the mechanism of tumor cell migration in the brain and to generate an animal model for efficient drug screening. Zebrafish is the vertebrate model organism used in this lab, due to their well-characterized nervous system and relatively simple neuromuscular organization. Moreover, by modeling diseases in zebrafish, researchers in the Beattie Lab are able to develop new approaches, such as genetic and drug screens, to identify targets that may alleviate the disease process.

Our Team

Our leaders


Christine Beattie, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Neuroscience

Dr. Beattie received her PhD from Case Western Reserve University and completed postdoctoral training with Dr. Judith Eisen at the University of Oregon. Dr. Beattie is using zebrafish as a vertebrate model system to study the genetic and molecular underpinnings of motoneuron development in the context of motoneuron diseases.


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Min An, MD, PhD

Research Associate

Brian Jaros

Undergraduate researcher

Hao Le, MD

Research Associate

Alessandra Welker

PhD Candidate


Our leaders


Tessa Carrel, PhD

Adjunct Professor of Anatomy, Columbus College of Art and Design

Anil Challa, PhD

Research Instructor, University of Alabama, Genetics Research Division

Michelle Gray, PhD

Assistant Professor, University of Alabama Dept of Neurology

Alison Lyon, PhD

Navicore Group LLC, Medical writer

Michelle McWhorter, PhD

Associate Professor, Wittenberg University Dept of Biology

Tennore Ramesh, PhD

Lecturer, Academic Neurology, University of Sheffield

Louise Rodino-Klapac, PhD

Assistant Professor, Center for Gene Therapy, Nationwide Children's Hospital

Current Projects

Current Projects

Recent Publications

Recent Publications

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