The Gambin Group is interested in how certain proteins clump together, leading to cell death and Parkinson’s disease.
They are using are a novel approach, which is much faster than traditional methods. They are using this new technique to solve different problems caused by proteins misbehaving in diseases affecting the brain, heart, muscle and other areas of the body.
The group’s research is focused on four areas:
- Protein aggregation – studying how proteins cluster together to signal more efficiently and how that is link to pathologies and protein polymerization.
- Aggregation analysis by single molecule techniques – studying protein aggregation has evolved based on new developments in single molecule spectroscopy. The group have developed a hybrid method that allows co-aggregation events.
- Aggregation in neurodegenerative diseases – one of the hallmarks of many neurodegenerative diseases are misfolding and pathological aggregation of proteins. The formation of protein aggregates and plaques in Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease is known to create havoc in cells.
- Prion-like behaviour in innate immunity – It has been recently discovered that two protein adaptors, known as ASC and MAVS, can create protein aggregates in immune cells with prion-like behaviours. Rather than be undesirable, this process can help amplify the immune response.