Stem cells are undifferentiated, self-renewing entities that generate specialized descendants. In particular, neural stem cells can be isolated from developing and adult organisms, or from embryonic stem cells in culture. My interest lies on understanding how neuronal differentiation from stem cells takes place. For this purpose, we are using cultured neural stem cells extracted form fetuses, or embryonic stem cells, to activate specific pathways and ask whether the responsive intracellular mediators led the cells to a particular neuronal type. If we can understand cell commitment, this knowledge might change the treatment of neurological conditions on the long term. Thus, we are also working with animal models and grafting techniques, with the ultimate goal of finding conditions in which neurons produced from stem cells will have a positive impact on specific neuro-deficits.