Amyloids in confinement


In neurodegenerative diseases the self-assembly of proteins into fibrils and of fibrils into mesoscopic aggregates does not take place in a large volume. Amyloid self assembles in spaces of sub cellular dimensions which makes the average test tube a bad model system. Additionally the aggregation does not take place in simple solutions. In brain cells membrane surfaces or other proteins may interact with the amyloidogenic proteins or amyloid fibrils. The influence of all these factors makes it difficult to understand the biophysics of amyloid aggregation in vivo. In this project we will try to mimic aspects of the complex environment of the cell and follow amyloid fibril self-assembly in (membrane enclosed) compartments of cellular dimensions using micro patterning, optical microscopy and spectroscopy techniques.

(funded by NWO-CW Vidi*)

Lipid matrix induced aggregates of α synuclein ,Imaged by 20X objective NIKON 2000

PhD student: Himanshu Chaudhary
Project leader: Mireille Claessens