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Discovery of proteins underlying devastating brain diseases

January 06, 2020

The method involved making a 'molecular hook' and attaching it to one protein inside brain cells of mice. They then caught the hook and pulled it out and found it brought along another 100 proteins. The set contained dozens of disease causing proteins.

"This points to the new concept that the molecular machines are defective in the diseases and that they present new ways to approach therapy," says Dr Choudhary.

Not only were there many disease proteins within the molecular machines but also proteins that control the communication between nerve cells and the mechanisms of learning and memory.

"This research is an important convergence of basic and clinical science," says Professor Grant. "Our findings are exciting because they suggest that the molecular machine itself is at the root of many important brain diseases. This was a blue-skies research project seeking the basic mechanisms of learning and memory and it has led us into some of the inner workings of the brain."

"This is a key step toward new ways to fight mental illness."

sanger.ac