Astrocyte-specific targeting: VGLUTs

Research team
Volterra Andrea PI
Gertsch Jürg Co-PI
Reymond Jean-Louis Co-PI
Awale Mahendra Postdoctoral Fellow
Becker Denise Postdoctoral Fellow
Poirier Marion Ph.D. Student
Stubbe Hiltrud Technician

Astrocytes release neuromodulatory transmitters and, thereby, may contribute to brain information processing and to CNS disease pathogenesis/progression. Interestingly, astrocytes, not only neurons, express vesicular transporters for glutamate (VGLUTs). This project aims at defining the specific contribution of astrocyte VGLUT-dependent signalling to normal and pathological (e.g. epilepsy and Parkinson disease) CNS function both at synaptic level and in vivo. In parallel, the development of small molecule modulators and anti-VGLUT nanobodies selectively targeting astrocytes is pursued in collaboration with chemists and structural biologists, facilitating the generation of added value among the TransCure Trias.