Webinar information

Protein Aggregates in Neurodegenerative Disease

Join us on July 7, 2021 from 5PM CET to 7PM CET (11 AM EST- 1PM EST) to hear from prominent researchers in the field of neurodegenerative disease and the role of protein aggregates. Speakers include Dr. Kelvin Luk of the University of Pennsylvania who will be discussing protein aggregation in disease models and Dr. Jeffrey Savas of Northwestern University who will be covering a robust method to extract amyloid plaque cores from brain tissue.


Kelvin Luk, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania

Leveraging protein aggregation for understanding and detecting neurodegenerative disease

5PM CET(Paris)/11AM EST(New York)

Misfolded protein aggregates are a distinctive feature of several major neurodegenerative diseases. Emerging evidence from both experimental models and human post-mortem studies suggest that the disease-associated proteins undergo prion-like cell-to-cell transmission. We will review recent conceptual and technical developments in replicating this phenomenon in model systems.

Jeffrey Nicholas Savas, Ph.D., Northwestern University

Ultrasonication based extraction of amyloid plaque cores from brain tissue

6PM CET(Paris)/12PM EST(New York)

In this webinar, Dr. Savas will describe his team’s recent success isolating amyloid plaque cores from rodent and human brain tissue using the Diagenode ultrasonicator. In the lab’s previous studies, they used traditional biochemical workflows to isolate amyloid plaque cores. However, electron microscopy and mass spectrometry-based proteomic analyses showed that the isolated material contained hundreds of aggregated proteins that were present in large clumps. The impact of these results is limited.. In order to remove non-specific proteins which become loosely attached to the amyloid fibrils during the purification process or in vivo they have incorporated an ultrasonication step to our workflow. This additional step has been transformative and increased our purification of amyloid plaque cores by more than 50-fold.

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About the Speaker

Dr. Luk is Research Associate Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Neurodegenerative Disease Research and Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. He received his BSc (Microbiology and Immunology) and PhD (Pathology) from McGill University. Dr. Luk’s research aims to untangle the relationship between the formation of alpha-synuclein pathology that characterizes Parkinson’s disease (PD) and related disorders, as well as its contribution to neuronal dysfunction and degeneration. Using a multidisciplinary approach spanning in vitro, cell-based, and in vivo models, his team interrogates the mechanisms by which misfolded forms of this protein act as pathological agents that self-propagate and spread across cells.

Read the application note by Dr. Kelvin Luk: “Standardizing seeding experiments using the Bioruptor® for the understanding of the neuronal alpha-synuclein pathology”


About the Speaker

Jeffrey Savas received a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He received his Doctor of Philosophy from New York University School and performed his postdoctoral training at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla. The Savas Lab opened at Northwestern University in 2015. The goal of our research is to advance our understanding of the mechanisms responsible for synaptic dysfunction in neurodegenerative diseases.