Welcome to the [email protected] We study brain neurovascular development, primarily in the human brain. Blood vessel cells serve as master architects in the brain, both delivering blood and interacting with brain cells to influence their function. The two main cell types which form blood vessels are endothelial and mural cells. Endothelial cells form tubes, the basic structure of blood vessels, and also secrete factors that tell brain stem cells to make new neurons. Mural cells lie on top of endothelial cells and help to form the blood brain barrier, which blocks unwanted substances and cells from getting into the brain. In a striking example of communication between blood vessel cells and other brain cells, babies born very premature are vulnerable to bleeding specifically in an area called the germinal matrix. This condition, called germinal matrix hemorrhage (GMH), occurs to 20% of these babies and can cause stroke and death in severe cases. Unfortunately, there are no animal models which accurately reflect this disease and we have no treatments.Brain vascular cells serve as master architects in the brain, both delivering blood and interacting with brain parchenchyma cells to influence their function. We then utilize a variety of different perspectives and techniques to understand brain vascular, blood, and neural cell relationships partnering with the UCSF PSSP, NIH (NINDS), UCSF Preterm Birth Initiative, UCSF ImmunoX, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, and the American Heart Association to fund our research. Finally, check out our publications for progress in this area. We are always interested in hiring curious, collaborative, and courageous scientists. Email elizabeth.crouch (at) ucsf.edu to inquire. For fun, we run the BreakingDownBiology blog (also funded by UCSF ImmunoX) to explain exciting scientific journal articles with every day language.