IISER Mohali, Knowledge city, Sector 81, SAS Nagar, Manauli PO 140306

Biomolecular Condensation in Neurodegeneration

Prof. Dr. Markus Zweckstetter, Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen &  University of Göttingen, Germany

Location : AB2-5B, Academics Block 2, IISER Mohali
Cells contain multiple compartments dedicated to the regulation and control of biochemical reactions. Cellular compartments that are not surrounded by membranes can rapidly form and dissolve in response to changes in the cellular environment. The physicochemical processes that underlie the formation of non-membrane-bound compartments in vivo are connected to liquid-liquid phase separation of proteins and nucleic acids in vitro. Recent evidence suggests that the protein tau, which plays an important role in Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders, phase separates in solution, forms tau phases with microtubules, and associates with phase-separated RNA-binding protein granules in cells. In my presentation I will review the experimental evidence that supports the ability of tau to phase separate and form biomolecular condensates. I will further discuss my lab’s efforts to target tau phase separation and the spreading of tau aggregates in the brain using small molecules.

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