DESCRIPTION OF LAB RESEARCH WORK
Protein aggregation is a hallmark of ageing-associated diseases, prominently including neurodegenerative diseases. Cellular protein homeostasis (or proteostasis) is maintained by network of multiple processes but its capacity declines during ageing, leading to protein aggregation. Our laboratory investigates how proteostasis pathways interact and how cells deal with protein aggregates. We are particularly interested in mRNA and protein quality control pathways that target ribosomes stalled during translation. We exploit methods of cell biology/biochemistry/structural biology to understand detailed mechanisms of proteostasis pathways and how their failure impacts on cellular fitness.
- Protein and mRNA quality control pathways at stalled ribosomes; Stalled ribosomes serve as a marker of faulty mRNAs and recruit factors to initiate mRNA and protein quality control pathways. We are trying to identify new genes involved in these pathways and characterize their functions.
- Toxic mechanisms of protein aggregates; Protein aggregates cause various diseases and we are trying to understand their toxic mechanisms. We are particularly interested in aggregation of proteins produced by stalled ribosomes.