Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center


Butler, Samantha, Ph.D.


Generation and repair of neural circuits


  • Assistant Professor, Brain Research Institute
  • Member, Neuroscience GPB Home Area
  • Adjunct Assistant Professor, Neurobiology


Dr. Butler is focused on determining how neurons translate morphogens, such as the Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP) family of growth factors, over time to mediate strikingly different processes in the generation of neural circuits. During the course of these studies, she identified a critical mechanism by which the rate of axon outgrowth is controlled during development.

The Butler laboratory is now examining how this process can be harnessed to accelerate axon growth in a regenerative context to stimulate the repair of neural circuits. The successful implementation of this technology could result in significantly improved recovery times for patients with damaged nervous systems.


  1. Butler, SJ, Louie, AV, Sutradhar, R, Paszat, L, Brooks, D, Gershon, AS et al.. Impact of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease on lung cancer symptom burden: a population-based study in Ontario, Canada. Transl Lung Cancer Res. 2023;12 (11):2260-2274. doi: 10.21037/tlcr-23-560. PubMed PMID:38090519 PubMed Central PMC10713274.
  2. Bodman, SE, Breen, C, Hambleton, AR, Butler, SJ, Willcock, H. A dual encapsulation strategy to generate anion-responsive luminescent lanthanide hydrogels. Chem Commun (Camb). 2024;60 (3):284-287. doi: 10.1039/d3cc04877b. PubMed PMID:38011114 .
  3. Alvarez, S, Gupta, S, Honeychurch, K, Mercado-Ayon, Y, Kawaguchi, R, Butler, SJ et al.. Netrin1 patterns the dorsal spinal cord through modulation of Bmp signaling. bioRxiv. 2023; :. doi: 10.1101/2023.11.02.565384. PubMed PMID:37961605 PubMed Central PMC10635094.
  4. Butler, SJ, Louie, AV, Sutradhar, R, Paszat, L, Brooks, D, Gershon, AS et al.. Palliative Care Among Lung Cancer Patients With and Without COPD: A Population-Based Cohort Study. J Pain Symptom Manage. 2023;66 (6):611-620.e4. doi: 10.1016/j.jpainsymman.2023.08.017. PubMed PMID:37619760 .
  5. Gupta, S, Heinrichs, E, Novitch, BG, Butler, SJ. Investigating the basis of lineage decisions and developmental trajectories in the dorsal spinal cord through pseudotime analyses. bioRxiv. 2024; :. doi: 10.1101/2023.07.24.550380. PubMed PMID:37546781 PubMed Central PMC10402035.
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