Equipment & Techniques
Alpha-Synuclein in Health and Disease - Our mission is to unravel the intricate biological regulation of membrane-less organelles at the synapse. The functioning of neuronal synapses is crucial for the communication between neurons and dysregulation has been implicated in various neurological disorders. Alpha-synuclein is a presynaptic protein which has garnered attention due to its involvement in the formation of protein aggregates. These are known as Lewy bodies and are a hallmark of Parkinson’s disease. Recent research suggests that liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) and the subsequent formation of condensates could play a critical role for the function alpha-synuclein as well as its aggregation. To gain a comprehensive understanding of this phenomenon, it is essential to understand how alpha-synuclein phase separation is regulated within its biological context. Combining in-vitro biochemical studies, cellular phase separation assays and super-resolution imaging in the lamprey reticulospinal giant synapse model we delve into the principles of synapse compartmentalization, studying alpha-synuclein function and dysfunction in disease.