About Our Laboratory
Our research focuses on understanding the cellular and molecular basis of neurodegeneration. Currently we are studying human neurodegenerative syndromes that affect the cerebellum and basal ganglia to result in abnormalities of movement such as ataxia and parkinsonism.
We are testing the idea that neurodegeneration results from derangements in relatively few but strategic sub-cellular pathways. By identifying critical components of these pathways one could begin to not only understand the biology of neurodegeneration, but also embark on the design of novel therapeutic agents.
Early activation of microglia and astrocytes in mouse models of spinocerebellar ataxia type 1. Neuroscience. Epub January 2015. Cvetanovic M., Ingram M., Orr, H., and Opal P. PMID: 25595967
An investigation of diffusion imaging techniques in the evaluation of spinocerebellar ataxia and multisystem atrophy. J Clin Neurosci. 2015 Jan;22(1):166-72. doi: 10.1016/j.jocn.2014.08.006. Epub 2014 Nov 26. Rozenfeld MN, Nemeth AJ, Walker MT, Mohan P, Wang X, Parrish TB, Opal P. PMID: 25439745
The histone deacetylase HDAC3 is essential for Purkinje cell function, potentially complicating the use of HDAC inhibitors in SCA1. Hum Mol Genet. 2014 Jul 15;23(14):3733-45. Venkatraman A, Hu YS, Didonna A, Cvetanovic M, Krbanjevic A, Bilesimo P, Opal P. PMID: 24594842