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Michael Shifman, PhD

Associate Professor, Shriners Hospitals Pediatric Research Center
Associate Professor, Neuroscience


Michael Shifman
Contact Information

Contact Information



About Me

Research Interests

The goal of my research is to investigate the connections between expression of axonal guidance receptors and neuronal regeneration after spinal cord injury. Our laboratory uses larval lampreys as experimental models of spinal cord injury and regeneration because of several features of lamprey CNS that make them uniquely suitable for regeneration research. My laboratory is one of the few that study cell and molecular biology of lamprey spinal cord regeneration. In particular, we are focusing on the role of axonal guidance molecules – netrins, semaphorins and RGM in spinal cord regeneration. We have cloned several axonal guidance molecules and their receptors from lamprey CNS and showed that their expression correlated with the ability of neurons to regenerate axons after spinal cord transection. We also study the role of microglia cells in lamprey axonal regeneration. In addition, my laboratory has focused on the retrograde neuronal death after spinal cord injury and recently showed selective apoptotic death of the spinal cord – projecting neurons after spinal cord transection.

Education, Training & Credentials

Educational Background

  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Research Training in Neurological Rehabilitation, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, 1997-2000
  • PhD, Neurobiology, Institute of Biophysics, Academy of Science Moscow, USSR, 1981-1986
  • MS, Genetics, Kharkov State University, Kharkov, USSR, 1977


  • Neurotrauma Society
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • New York Academy of Science
  • Society for Neuroscience

PubMed Publications

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