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Welcome to the Sahlgrenska Academy Science Seminars, a series of seminars on Thursdays at 15-16. The seminars are, during spring 2021, conducted through Zoom Webinars.
- Here is the link to the webinar: https://gu-se.zoom.us/j/69661780142
The seminars are open to anyone interested in taking part of scientific breakthroughs and projects in the medicine and health science field. Scientists, students and other staff from GU, VGR and other organisations with the common interest of medicine and health science, welcome!
The Tvorup Christensen group studies the primary cilium, a surface-exposed sensory organelle that coordinates cellular signaling during development and in tissue homeostasis, and when defective results in numerous diseases and pleiotropic syndromes called ciliopathies that affect most tissues and organs in our body. The group employs a variety of different approaches, from biochemistry, molecular biology and proteomics to mammalian cell cultures and zebrafish models, to study the molecular mechanisms by which primary cilia assemble, disassemble, and function to coordinate cellular signaling networks during embryonic development and in tissue homeostasis.
Recently, together with the group of Professor Lars Allan Larsen and an international research team, the group has has taken an important step forward in understanding the complex mechanisms that control development of the so-called cerebral cortex, which is the part of the brain that play a key role in attention, perception, awareness, thought, memory, language, and consciousness.
Genetic analyses of a large family in which children were born with primary microcephaly; a rare congenital brain disorder characterized by a reduction in the size of the cerebral cortex and varying degree of cognitive dysfunction, were carried out. The team found that the children were carriers of a mutation in both copies of the gene, RRP7A, and by the use of stem cell cultures as well as zebrafish as model organism, RRP7A was shown to play a critical role for brain stem cells to proliferate and form new neurons. This process is extremely complex and slight disturbances may have serious consequences, which may explain why the mutation affects the brain and no other tissues and organs. The researchers could show that the mutation in RRP7A affects the function of the so-called primary cilia, which project in a single copy as antenna-like structures on the surface of cells to register environmental cues and control the formation of new neurons in the developing brain.
Host: Ruth Palmer
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