July 1, 2022, Cleveland: The National Institute of Aging (NIA) has awarded a $2 million, 5-year research grant to Dr. Wenzhang Wang, who is a Cleveland Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (CADRC) Research Education Component Mentee. Dr. Wang will study ApoE, an Alzheimer’s disease (AD) risk factor gene, and Abeta, a protein that is deposited on the brain, in the regulation of mitochondria and lysosome interactions in AD. The project will be conducted at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and falls under the umbrella of research conducted by the CADRC.
Many scientists believe that a key cause of AD is ApoE and Abeta. Dr. Wang’s project will further explore how ApoE and Abeta may accelerate the interaction between mitochondria, an organelle that generates most of the chemical energy needed to power the cell’s reactions, and endolysosome, organelles that play a key role in a cell’s life and death. Such abnormal interaction is believed to cause mitochondrial dysfunction in brain cells that is likely essential for the onset of symptoms of AD patients.
In this newly funded project, Dr. Wang will study the AD risk factors of ApoE and Abeta and how they contribute to AD onset and progression, and will also explore the therapeutic potential by targeting on the related mechanism to cure AD.