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Section 3.4.9

Discussion

Explain in the discussion section of your document information presented in the results section, commenting on significant data produced by the study. In writing a discussion section, keep the following points in mind.


Discussion

The major finding of our current work is that inhibition of SL synthesis and degradation haveopposite effects on the formation or stabilization of collateral axonal branches. In contrast, no effectis observed on the formation of the parent axon during its emergence from the cell body. The factthat inhibition of SL synthesis and degradation affect growth in hippocampal neurons is not entirelyunexpected. SLs have been implicated in a variety of cellular phenomena, including cell-cellinteraction, differentiation, and adhesion (7, 34). Addition of exogenous SLs, particularly GMs, hasdramatic effects on neuronal growth in primary neuronal cultures and in neuroblastoma (8). It hasalso been demonstrated that accumulation of SLs in animal models of lysosomal storage disordersis accompanied by abnormal appearance of ectopic dendrites at the axonal hillock (35). Manipulationof endogenous SLs in hippocampal neurons might therefore be predicted to affect growth, as hasbeen observed in cells and tissues of non-neuronal origin (16, 17, 18, 36, 37) and in neuroblastoma(38). However, ours is the first study that implicates SL metabolism in a particular facet of neuronalgrowth, namely collateral branch formation or stabilization.

--Andreas Schwarz et al., "A Regulatory Role for Sphingolipids in Neuronal Growth,"Journal of Chemical Biology


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