The medical, social, and economic impact of age-related neurodegenerative diseases is immense, and is increasing rapidly as life expectancy is extended and the average age of the population shifts upward. These disorders, which include Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, prion diseases and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, are due to the misfolding and aggregation of key brain proteins. Multiple sclerosis is another chronic neurological condition that is the subject of intensive research. All of these disorders are related to perturbations in key cellular and molecular pathways, including those related to protein folding and degradation, neuronal plasticity, and inflammation. The Department of Biochemistry offers trainees exciting opportunities to study the mechanisms underlying these devastating human neurological diseases, and to explore novel therapies for treating them.

Faculty conducting research in these areas: