Modifiers of Abeta toxicity in Drosophila
Although progress has been made in understanding the basic pathology of Alzheimer's disease, the currently available therapies can only address the symptoms of the disease and fail to reverse its causes. In order to be able to design therapies that effectively combat this devastating disease, it is necessary to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms that lead to neuronal death in affected individuals. Aβ peptides have been shown to be toxic to neurons, but the specific mechanisms of such toxicity remain to be further elucidated. Dr. Konsolaki intends to isolate and characterize genes that play a role in Aβ-associated toxicity, using genetic screens in flies. These screens will lead to the identification of novel factors associated with Aβ neurotoxicity and will contribute to the understanding of pathways that mediate Aβ effects. This knowledge may contribute to future design of appropriate therapies for Alzheimer's.