Mitochondrial medicine research group

Our mitochondrial medicine research group is focused on the role of mitochondrial dynamics in neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric diseases. Our aim is to identify drugable target molecules and pathways to protect mitochondrial function and to support the mitochondrial quality control mechanisms. We are also developing imaging based techniques for rapid quantification of the mitochondrial function and dynamics (incl. mitochondrial quality control mechanisms) in AD and PD neuronal model systems with a view to using these as an endpoint in compound screening.
Under this project our aim will be to cooperate with other groups of CoE to identify  the novel genes and proteins involved in neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric diseases. Using new high-throughput whole genome sequencing techniques, knowledge in mitochondrial genetics and bioinformatics  we will identify potential new genes and mutations that might be related to mitochondrial disorders. Using the quantitative metabolomics and proteomics as well as molecular and cellular biology techniques complemented by the use of animal models, we are characterizing the molecular basis of the interactions and function of those we have identified.
Our research group is currently of the size of 12 people: PI Allen Kaasik, senior researchers Michal Cagalinec, Vinay Choubey and Annika Vaarmann,  lecturers/senior researchers Dzamilja Safiulina, Miriam Hickey and Malle Kuu  and 5 PhD students Akbar Zeb, Merle Mandel, Joanna Liiv, Mailis Liiv and Nana Gogichaishvili. 

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