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2008 Grants - Roy
Mechanisms of Axonal Transport Dysfunction in Alzheimer's Disease
Subhojit Roy, Ph.D.
University of California, San Diego
San Diego, California
2008 New Investigator Research Grant
The protein fragment beta-amyloid is thought to disrupt cell-to-cell communication and cause brain cell death in Alzheimer's disease. Research indicates that beta-amyloid inhibits the function of microtubules—long, thin structures inside nerve cells that help transport nutrients along other cellular structures called axons. These abnormalities may, in turn, hinder cell-to-cell communication in the brain by inhibiting the function of synapses, the tiny channels through which nerve cells send and receive chemical messages.
Subhojit Roy, Ph.D., and colleagues hope to test this theory using cultured brain cells. The results of their effort could shed new light on how beta-amyloid damages the brain's communication network. Such damage is the chief cause of cognitive loss and memory deficits in Alzheimer's disease.