My research interests lie in identifying and characterizing genes that are associated with this natural regeneration process that takes place in the zebrafish retina following severe or complete trauma. More specifically, I am interested in the genes that have to do with cell morphogenesis and cell communication. Possible genes that could be associated with my research include several genes in the cadherin family and the hedgehog family, both having been implicated in development of the central nervous system. The cadherin family of genes are a family of genes that produce transmembrane proteins that play important roles in cell adhesion, specifically among the same cell types (i.e. neurons). In this group, I am currently investigating further roles for cadherin 2 (neuronal cadherin) and cadherin 4 (retinal cadherin). The hedgehog signaling pathway has recently been implicated in adult stem cells, which are responsible for regeneration of adult tissues. In this family, the most promising candidate seems to be sonic hedgehog, which has been found to act as a signaling protein involved in retinal development.