Many neurodegenerative disorders are defined by accumulations of misfolded proteins in the brain. Mutations in the gene PLA2G6, which is involved in lipid metabolism, lead to neurodegenerative disorders and accumulation of alpha-synuclein — the same protein that accumulates in the brains of Parkinson’s Disease patients. This project will develop methods to detect misfolded protein accumulation in cultured neurons, and will generate a new animal model of alpha-synuclein overproduction. These new tools will enable the development of therapies to minimize toxicity and improve clearance of misfolded proteins.
Updated October 2012