Benoit Giasson, Ph.D.

Professor

Department of Neuroscience
Center for Translational Research in Neurodegenerative Disease
1275 Center Drive
PO Box 100159
Gainesville, FL  32610-0159
Email: bgiasson@ufl.edu
Office Phone: (352) 273-9363
Lab Phone: (352) 273-9367
Lab Members: Giasson Lab

Education:

1997 Ph.D.
Biochemistry
McGill University
Montreal, Canada
1998-2001 Postdoctoral Fellowship
Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
Dr. Virginia M.-Y. Lee, Mentor
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA
2001-2003 Postdoctoral Fellowship
Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
Dr. John Trojanowski, Mentor
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA

Key Words:  Parkinson’s disease; Neuronal Damage; Protein Aggregation; Kinases; Alpha-synuclein; Tau

Research Summary:

The research in my laboratory is focused on understanding the cellular mechanisms and molecular interactions involved as underlying causes of neurodegenerative diseases, but with greater emphasis on Parkinson’s disease and related disorders. A primary research interest is to expand the understanding of the regulation of protein interactions and folding that affect protein aggregation in the nervous system.  This goal includes studying the natural biological activities involved in the regulation of proper protein folding and processing, as well as cellular activities that act as “countermeasures” to prevent, reverse or eliminate proteinaceous inclusions. In addition, this research includes characterizing the effects of environments factors on genetic products that have been involved in neurodegenerative diseases since such studies have provided strong evidence implicating specific environmental factors in influencing disease presentation and progression. In my laboratory we pursue these goals using a diverse spectrum of complementary techniques including histological and biochemical studies of human postmortem tissues, molecular biology, cell culture applications, animal models, protein interactions and aggregation assays, biochemical assays of protein modifications and several imaging procedures. The overall goals of these studies are to provide novel and significant insights into both the normal function of neuronal proteins involved in neurodegenerative diseases as well as the development of therapeutic strategies to prevent aberrant protein aggregation and neuronal demise.

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