ZEISS invites you to its first Research Journal Webinar on Autophagy Flux in Health and Disease by Dr. Ravi Manjithaya on 25 April 2019 at 2.30 PM IST. ZEISS Research Journal Webinar is a platform for researchers/scientists to present their research and engage with the scientific community for the development of science.
- Mechanisms that govern autophagy in the context of health and disease
- Recent unpublished results of selective autophagy of intracellular pathogens (xenophagy)
- Using an in-house real time highthroughput assay to identify hits
Autophagy is an evolutionarily conserved cellular recycling process that involves degradation of superfluous and damaged organelles and long-lived proteins. Misregulation of autophagy can exasperate disease conditions such intracellular infection, neurodegeneration and cancer. During neurodegeneration, impaired autophagy is unable to clear protein aggregates resulting in cell death. My laboratory has found this true in yeast models of neurodegeneration as well. Employing these models, we identified "hits": peptidomimetic modulators and small molecules that rescued yeast cells from the toxic effects of the protein aggregates in an autophagy dependent manner. In a preclinical mouse model of Parkinson’s, these autophagy modulators demonstrated neuroprotection of dopaminergic neurons and prevented motor deficits. Furthermore, we have exploited this chemical biology screening approach using an in-house real time highthroughput assay to identify hits (from 200,000 compounds). These tools have shed light on the biogenesis, maturation of autophagosomes and fusion with lysosomes. I will also share some of recent unpublished results of selective autophagy of intracellular pathogens (xenophagy). The pay off of using chemical biology approaches in potential translation work will also be presented. Finally, we have addressed one of the key questions in this field which is the mechanism of membrane supply for formation of autophagosomes. Using genetic screens, we also identified two moonlighting protein complexes-septins and exocyst that participate in Atg9 trafficking to provide these membranes. My talk will shed light on mechanisms that govern autophagy in the context of health and disease.
Dr. Ravi received his PhD degree in Posttranscriptional Gene Regulation from Indian Institute of Science (Advisor: Prof. Rajan Dighe). He did his postdoctoral training in the autophagy related pathways at the University of California, San Diego (Mentor: Prof. Suresh Subramani) before joining JNCASR as a Faculty Fellow in 2011. He is a Wellcome Trust-DBT Intermediate fellow (2011). His research interests include autophagy related pathways and post transcriptional gene regulation. In his free time he does hiking and plays cricket.