Areas of Interest
The Parent laboratory’s current research focuses on the fields of stem cell biology, including human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC) disease modeling and adult neurogenesis, mechanisms of epileptogenesis and epilepsy complications, and regeneration after brain injury.
The Lab’s three main research interests are:
iPSC Models of Genetic Epilepsies: Using epilepsy patient cells, Parent lab researchers generate 2-D cortical neuronal cultures and brain organoids to investigate the mechanisms of genetic epilepsies and develop precision therapies.
Rodent Models of Epilepsy: Researchers induce epilepsy in rodents via genetic manipulations to study genetic epilepsies, or by specific brain insults to investigate acquired epilepsies. The goal is to understand how specific gene mutations or brain insults cause epilepsy, and to develop novel therapies to treat or prevent epilepsy.
Adult Neurogeneration: Many fish and reptiles have the ability to regenerate most or all portions of the body. For zebrafish, this includes regeneration of significant portions of the brain. The Parent lab is investigating the processes involved in this regrowth and identifying key differences in mammals.
The Parent Lab Group’s goals are to 1) elucidate mechanisms of brain development and epileptogenesis to develop precision therapies for rare genetic epilepsies; 2) advance knowledge about the role and regulation of neural stem cells in the adult vertebrate brain, and 3) to use this knowledge to devise brain repair strategies based on the manipulation of endogenous or transplanted neural precursors.
Dr. Parent also founded the Human Stem Cell and Gene Editing Core at Michigan Medicine in 2015, and he directs the core with Dr. Michael Uhler.
Honors & Awards
Dr. Parent has received several awards for his research, including a Paul Beeson Physician Faculty Scholars in Aging Award, a Dreifuss-Penry Epilepsy Award from the American Academy of Neurology, a Grass Foundation Award in Neuroscience from the American Neurological Association, and the American Epilepsy Society Basic Science Research Award. He was inducted into the University of Michigan Medical School League of Research Excellence and as a Taubman Institute Senior Scholar.
Dr. Parent recently served as Secretary of the American Neurological Association and on the Board of Directors of the American Epilepsy Society. He also founded and co-chairs the Scientific Advisory Board of the Dravet Syndrome Foundation.
Dr. Parent was recently the Chief Editor of Epilepsy Currents and the Epilepsy Section Editor of Experimental Neurology, and currently serves on the editorial boards of Brain Plasticity and the Journal of Experimental Medicine.
Frasier CR, Zhang H, Offord J, Dang LT, Auerbach DS, Shi H, Chen C, Goldman AM, Eckhardt LL, Bezzerides VJ, Parent JM, Isom LL. Channelopathy as a SUDEP Biomarker in Dravet Syndrome Patient-Derived Cardiac Myocytes. Stem Cell Reports. 2018 Sep 11;11(3):626-634. doi: 10.1016/j.stemcr.2018.07.012.
Gupta S, M-Redmond T, Meng F, Tidball A, Akil H, Watson S, Parent JM, Uhler M. Fibroblast growth factor 2 regulates activity and gene expression of human post-mitotic excitatory neurons. J Neurochem. 2018 May;145(3):188-203. doi: 10.1111/jnc.14255.
Wang Y, Ji T, Nelson A, Glanowska K, Murphy GG, Jenkins PM, Parent JM. Critical roles of aII spectrin in brain development and epileptic encephalopathy. J. Clin. Invest. 128:760-773, 2018.
Althaus A, Moore S, Zhang H, Du X, Murphy GG, Parent JM. Altered synaptic drive onto birthdated dentate granule cells in experimental temporal lobe epilepsy. J. Neurosci. 39:7604-7614, 2019.
Rodriguez CM, Wright SE, Kearse MG, Haenfler JM, Flores BN, Liu Y, Ifrim MF, Glineburg MR, Krans A, Jafar-Nejad P, Sutton MA, Bassell GK, Parent JM, Rigo R, Barmada1 SJ, Todd PK. A native function for RAN translation and CGG repeats in regulating Fragile X protein synthesis. Nat. Neurosci. 23:386-397. 2020.
Tidball AM, Lopez-Santiago LF, Yuan Y, Glen TW, Margolis JL, Walker JC, Kilbane EG, Miller CA, Bebin EM, Perry MS, Isom LL, Parent JM. Variant-Specific Changes in Persistent or Resurgent Sodium Current in SCN8A-Related Epilepsy Patient-Derived Neurons. Brain 143:3025-3040, 2020.