We are currently investigating early events in neurodegenerative diseases involving mitochondria, such as Huntington’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Neurons are highly dependent on mitochondria for their energy supply and their survival. These organelles are highly dynamic and can migrate, fuse or divide. During neurodegeneration, mitochondrial fragmentation occurs before neurite injury and cell death. Thus, our goal is to understand what triggers mitochondria demise. Our primary focus is the regulation of key proteins affecting mitochondrial dynamics, such as Drp1, Opa1, Mfn1 and Mfn2.
Recent Publications
1. Bossy, Blaise, Alejandra Petrilli, Eva Klinglmayr, Jin Chen, Ursula Lütz-Meindl, Andrew B. Knott, Eliezer Masliah, Robert Schwarzenbacher and Ella Bossy-Wetzel. S-Nitrosylation of DRP1 does not affect its enzymatic activity and is not specific to Alzheimer’s disease. J. of Alzheimer’s Disease 20: S513-S526 (2010).

2. Liot, G., Bossy, B., Lubitz, S., Kushnareva, Y., Sejbuk, N., Bossy-Wetzel, E. Complex II inhibition by 3-NP causes mitochondrial fragmentation and neuronal cell death via an NMDA- and ROS-dependant pathway. Cell Death and Differentiation: 1-11 (2009).

3. Song*, W., Bossy*, B., Martin*, O.J., Hicks, A., Lubitz, S., Knott, A.B., Bossy-Wetzel, E. (2008). Assessing mitochondrial morphology and dynamics using fluorescence wide-field microscopy and 3D image processing. Methods 46: 295-303 (2008). (* co-first authors).

4. Li, H., Chen, Y., Jones, A.F., Sanger, R.H., Collis, L.P., Flannery, R., McKay, E.C., Yu, T., Schwarzenbacher, R., Bossy, B., Bossy-Wetzel, E., Bennett, M.V., Pypaert, M., Hickman, J.A., Smith, P.J., Hardwick, J.M., Jonas, E.A. (2008). Bcl-xL induces Drp-1 dependent synapse formation in cultured hippocampal neurons. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 105(6): 2169-2174.

5. Bossy, B., Perkins, G., Bossy-Wetzel, E. (2008) Clearing the brain’s cobweb: autophagy in neuroprotection. Current Neuropharmacology, 6(2):97-101.

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