Rachael Norris

Rachael Norris

Assistant Professor (In Residence)
Phone: 860-679-3476
Email: norris@uchc.edu

My current research involves investigating the trafficking of cellular signaling proteins in mouse ovarian follicles, by combining immunolabeling with serial section electron microscopy.  In recent studies, I demonstrated that immunogold labeling of connexin 43 (Cx43) in serial ultrathin sections of ovarian follicles provides a better understanding of the origin and fate of internalized gap junctions (Norris et al., 2017; Norris and Terasaki, 2021). I have also shown that the internalization of Cx43 gap junctions is a means to transfer organelles between cells (Norris, 2021). In ongoing studies, I am comparing the localization of the luteinizing hormone receptor within ovarian follicles before and after hormone treatment.  I am also interested in further development of techniques to immunolabel proteins within a volume of tissue viewed by electron microscopy.

Immunogold labeling of connexin 43Publications

Transfer of mitochondria and endosomes between cells by gap junction internalizationNorris RP. Traffic. 2021 Jun;22(6):174-179. doi: 10.1111/tra.12786. Epub 2021 Apr 14.

Gap junction internalization and processing in vivo: a 3D immuno-electron microscopy study. Norris RP, Terasaki M. J Cell Sci. 2021 Jan 11;134(1):jcs252726. doi: 10.1242/jcs.252726.

Anteroposterior axis patterning by early canonical Wnt signaling during hemichordate development. Darras S, Fritzenwanker JH, Uhlinger KR, Farrelly E, Pani AM, Hurley IA, Norris RP, Osovitz M, Terasaki M, Wu M, Aronowicz J, Kirschner M, Gerhart JC, Lowe CJ. PLoS Biol. 2018 Jan 16;16(1):e2003698. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2003698. eCollection 2018 Jan.

Localization of phosphorylated connexin 43 using serial section immunogold electron microscopy. Norris RP, Baena V, Terasaki M. J Cell Sci. 2017 Apr 1;130(7):1333-1340. doi: 10.1242/jcs.198408. Epub 2017 Feb 15.

Redistribution of Gαs in mouse salivary glands following β-adrenergic stimulation. Hand AR, Elder KO, Norris RP. Arch Oral Biol. 2015 May;60(5):715-23. doi: 10.1016/j.archoralbio.2015.01.010. Epub 2015 Feb 25.

Intercellular signaling via cyclic GMP diffusion through gap junctions restarts meiosis in mouse ovarian follicles. Shuhaibar LC, Egbert JR, Norris RP, Lampe PD, Nikolaev VO, Thunemann M, Wen L, Feil R, Jaffe LA. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Apr 28;112(17):5527-32. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1423598112. Epub 2015 Mar 16.

FGF signaling induces mesoderm in the hemichordate Saccoglossus kowalevskii. Green SA, Norris RP, Terasaki M, Lowe CJ. Development. 2013 Mar;140(5):1024-33. doi: 10.1242/dev.083790. Epub 2013 Jan 23.

Connexin43 phosphorylation in brain, cardiac, endothelial and epithelial tissues. Márquez-Rosado L, Solan JL, Dunn CA, Norris RP, Lampe PD. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2012 Aug;1818(8):1985-92. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2011.07.028. Epub 2011 Jul 26. Review

Luteinizing hormone reduces the activity of the NPR2 guanylyl cyclase in mouse ovarian follicles, contributing to the cyclic GMP decrease that promotes resumption of meiosis in oocytes. Robinson JW, Zhang M, Shuhaibar LC, Norris RP, Geerts A, Wunder F, Eppig JJ, Potter LR, Jaffe LA. Dev Biol. 2012 Jun 15;366(2):308-16. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2012.04.019. Epub 2012 Apr 21.

Phosphorylation of serine residues in the C-terminal cytoplasmic tail of connexin43 regulates proliferation of ovarian granulosa cells. Dyce PW, Norris RP, Lampe PD, Kidder GM. J Membr Biol. 2012 Jun;245(5-6):291-301. doi: 10.1007/s00232-012-9450-6. Epub 2012 Jun 24.

Epidermal growth factor receptor kinase activity is required for gap junction closure and for part of the decrease in ovarian follicle cGMP in response to LH. Norris RP, Freudzon M, Nikolaev VO, Jaffe LA. Reproduction. 2010 Nov;140(5):655-62. doi: 10.1530/REP-10-0288. Epub 2010 Sep 8

Cyclic GMP from the surrounding somatic cells regulates cyclic AMP and meiosis in the mouse oocyte. Norris RP, Ratzan WJ, Freudzon M, Mehlmann LM, Krall J, Movsesian MA, Wang H, Ke H, Nikolaev VO, Jaffe LA. Development. 2009 Jun;136(11):1869-78. doi: 10.1242/dev.035238.

Microinjection of follicle-enclosed mouse oocytes. Jaffe LA, Norris RP, Freudzon M, Ratzan WJ, Mehlmann LM. Methods Mol Biol. 2009;518:157-73. doi: 10.1007/978-1-59745-202-1_12.

Luteinizing hormone causes MAP kinase-dependent phosphorylation and closure of connexin 43 gap junctions in mouse ovarian follicles: one of two paths to meiotic resumption. Norris RP, Freudzon M, Mehlmann LM, Cowan AE, Simon AM, Paul DL, Lampe PD, Jaffe LA. Development. 2008 Oct;135(19):3229-38. doi: 10.1242/dev.025494.

A G(s)-linked receptor maintains meiotic arrest in mouse oocytes, but luteinizing hormone does not cause meiotic resumption by terminating receptor-G(s) signaling. Norris RP, Freudzon L, Freudzon M, Hand AR, Mehlmann LM, Jaffe LA. Dev Biol. 2007 Oct 15;310(2):240-9. Epub 2007 Jul 24.

Regulation of meiotic prophase arrest in mouse oocytes by GPR3, a constitutive activator of the Gs G protein. Freudzon L, Norris RP, Hand AR, Tanaka S, Saeki Y, Jones TL, Rasenick MM, Berlot CH, Mehlmann LM, Jaffe LA. J Cell Biol. 2005 Oct 24;171(2):255-65.