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Drosophila sensory neurons tile the larval body wall, Dr. Chun Han

Faculty

Office: 
Campus Address: IND Room 211A, Box 1207
Phone: 
(415) 502-7123

Aimee Kao

Lysosome biology and pH dynamics in aging and disease

My lab is interested in understanding the basic cell and molecular changes leading to the aberrant proteostasis seen in aging and neurodegenerative conditions. In particular, we are focused on the consequences of impaired autophagy and lysosomal function. The lysosome is not only the cell’s garbage can—rather, it is a central regulator of homeostasis, responsible for protein and lipid recycling, amino acid storage, appropriate stress response and regulated cell growth. We have shown that neurodegenerative disease mutations can impact stress response by altering lysosome function with pleotropic downstream consequences. Our current work utilizes C. elegans, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and other cellular models to decipher how alterations in lysosome function, autophagy, cell and organelle pH and stress response programs can lead to neuronal dysfunction and death.