Conférence: Targeting alpha-synuclein aggregation for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease

L'Institut Pasteur de Tunis est heureux d'annoncer la tenue d'une conférence en accès libre intitulée "Targeting alpha-synuclein aggregation for the treatment of Parkinson's disease", présentée par le Pr. Abid Oueslati, Professeur associé au Département de médecine moléculaire de la Faculté de médecine de l'Université Laval, Québec, et Directeur du Laboratoire Neurodégénérescence moléculaire et cellulaire au Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec-Université Laval.


La conférence se déroulera le 20 juillet 2023 à partir de 11 heures dans le grand amphithéâtre de l'IPT.


The formation and accumulation of abnormal protein aggregates is a paramount pathological hallmark shared by several, if not all, neurodegenerative diseases. One example is α-synuclein-rich inclusions found in synucleinopathies, which are referred to as Lewy bodies. While their presence is well established, how these aggregates affect neuronal homeostasis remains elusive, in part because we lack the proper tools to undertake such investigations. We have therefore set out to tackle this question by developing a unique approach to fully control α-syn aggregation and LBs formation in cell culture and within cerebral tissue using light. We have termed this technique Light-inducible protein aggregation (LIPA) and herein provide the extent of applicability using both in vitro and in vivo contexts. In living cells, our LIPA system allows real-time induction of α-syn inclusion formation with remarkable spatial and temporal resolution. LIPA-induced aggregates auto-perpetuate for several days after transient induction with light, and faithfully mimic several authentic features of LBs. This system constitutes a new and exceptional tool by which to generate, visualize and dissect the role of LBs in neurodegeneration and as such, identify new genetic and pharmacological inhibitors of α-syn aggregation for the treatment of α-synucleinopathies.


Dr. Oueslati is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular Medicine at Laval University, Director of the Molecular and Cellular Neurodegeneration Laboratory at the CHU Research Center in Quebec City, and a member of the management committee of l’Axe de Neurosciences-CHUL.
Dr. Oueslati obtained his Advanced Studies Diploma (ASD) in Neurobiology (2004), as well as his Doctorate in neuroscience (2008) at the Université de la Méditerranée Aix-Marseille – Faculté des Sciences de Luminy, Marseille-France. He then joined The Brain and Mind Institute at l’École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland, for a Postdoctoral fellowship in the group of Dr. Hilal A. Lashuel (2008-2014). After a short experience in the pharmaceutical industry at the ‘EPFL Innovation Parc’, he joined Laval University as Associate Professor (2014), and then as Assistant Professor in June 2015.
The research program developed by Dr. Oueslati and his colleagues aims to understand the involvement of protein misfolding and aggregation in neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.



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