Mollie B. Woodworth

Assistant Professor of Neuroscience



Bonney Science Center, Room 280



  • S.B. Brain and Cognitive Sciences, S.B. Biology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2006)
  • Ph.D. Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Harvard University (2013)
  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Division of Genetics and Genomics, Children’s Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School (2016)
  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Department of Ophthalmology, Stanford University (2023)

Courses Taught

  • NRSC 160 Introduction to Neuroscience
  • NRSC 325 Neural Development
  • NRSC 335 Degeneration and Regeneration of the Nervous System
  • NRSC s22 Methods in Developmental Neuroscience

Research Interests

Vision loss is a devastating medical problem that leads to lower quality of life and loss of independence among those affected. Because the human retina has minimal or no regenerative ability, the death of retinal neurons due to injury or disease is generally irreversible, making this the most common cause of permanent visual impairment. If retinal neurons could be regenerated from progenitor cells that live within the adult human body, these patients could have their vision restored.

I study the development of retinal ganglion cells, the neurons that connect the eye with the brain. These neurons are vulnerable to injury in traumatic optic nerve injuries and to diseases such as glaucoma, and a deeper understanding of their development and regeneration could have significant implications for reversing visual impairment. I investigate retinal ganglion cells through the lens of development, by seeking to understand the way retinal ganglion cells normally develop and the ways these developmental pathways could be exploited to encourage regeneration in adult animals, using mice as a model system.

Selected Publications

  1. Woodworth MB, Greig LC, Goldberg J. (2023) “Intrinsic and induced neuronal regeneration in the mammalian retina.” Antioxidants and Redox Signaling. Published online ahead of print, DOI:10.1089/ars.2023.0309
  2. Woodworth MB, Girskis K, Walsh CA. (2017) “Building a lineage from single cells: Genetic techniques for cell lineage tracking.” Nature Reviews Genetics 18(4): 230-244. PMID: 28111472. With cover.
  3. Greig LC*, Woodworth MB*, Greppi C, Macklis JD. (2016) “Ctip1 controls acquisition of sensory area identity and establishment of sensory input fields in the developing neocortex.” Neuron 90(2):261-277. PMID: 27100196. *equal contribution
  4. Woodworth MB*, Greig LC*, Liu KX, Ippolito GC, Tucker HO, Macklis JD. (2016) “Ctip1 regulates the balance of projection neuron subtype specification in deep cortical layers.” Cell Reports 15(5): 999-1012. PMID: 27117402. With cover. *equal contribution
  5. Lodato MA*, Woodworth MB*, Lee S*, Evrony GD, Mehta BK, Karger A, Lee S, Chittenden TW, D’Gama AM, Cai X, Luquette LJ, Lee E, Park PJ, Walsh CA. (2015) “Somatic mutation in single human neurons tracks developmental and transcriptional history.” Science 350(6256):94-8. PMID: 26430121. With cover. *equal contribution
  6. Greig LC*, Woodworth MB*, Galazo MJ, Padmanabhan H, Macklis JD. (2013) “Molecular logic of neocortical projection neuron specification, development, and diversity.” Nature Reviews Neuroscience 14(11): 755-69. PMID: 24105342. *equal contribution
  7. Woodworth MB*, Custo Greig L*, Kriegstein AR, Macklis JD. (2012) “Snapshot: Cortical development.” Cell 151(4): 918-918.e.1. PMID: 23141546. *equal contribution