About Our Lab
The overarching goal of our research is to define the key molecular pathways in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease. Using patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) differentiated into neurons, we study cellular dysfunction of endolysosomal and mitochondrial pathways in genetic models of Parkinson’s (α-synuclein, LRRK2, VPS35, ATP13A2, PINK1, parkin, DJ-1 and GBA1), as well as the cellular mechanisms involved in Huntington’s disease and Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD) pathogenesis. We aim to advance patient-specific approaches to therapeutic development, including development of new technologies for iPSCs to examine selective neuronal vulnerability. We focus on identification of converging pathogenic pathways to identify key targets for therapeutic development in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's. Learn more about the Krainc Lab
Recent Key Publications
Ysselstein D, Nguyen M, Young TJ, Severino A, Schwake M, Merchant K, Krainc D. LRRK2 kinase activity regulates lysosomal glucocerebrosidase in neurons derived from Parkinson's disease patients. Nat Commun. 2019.
Burbulla LF, Jeon S, Zheng J, Song P, Silverman RB, Krainc D. A modulator of wild-type glucocerebrosidase improves pathogenic phenotypes in dopaminergic neuronal models of Parkinson's disease. Sci Transl Med. 2019.
Wong YC, Peng W, Krainc D. Lysosomal Regulation of Inter-mitochondrial Contact Fate and Motility in Charcot-Marie-Tooth Type 2. Dev Cell. 2019.
Nguyen M, Krainc D. LRRK2 phosphorylation of auxilin mediates synaptic defects in dopaminergic neurons from patients with Parkinson's disease. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018.
Wong, Y.C., Ysselstein, D., Krainc, D. Mitochondria-lysosome contacts regulate mitochondrial fission via RAB7 GTP hydroloysis. Nature, 2018
Burbulla, L.F., Song, P., Mazzulli, J.R., Zampese, E., Wong, Y.C., Jeon, S., Santos, D.P., Blanz, J., Obermaier, C., Strojny, C., Savas, J., Kiskinis, E., Zhuang, X., Krüger, R., Surmeier, J.D., Krainc, D. Dopamine oxidation mediates mitochondrial and lysosomal dysfunction in Parkinson's disease. Science, 2017
News and Announcements
Dan Ysselstein publishes in Nature Communications with Maria Nguyen, Tiffany Young, Alex Severino, and Michael Schwake: "LRRK2 kinase activity regulates lysosomal glucocerebrosidase in neurons derived from Parkinson's disease patients." Highlighted in Feinberg News.
Lena Burbulla publishes in Science Translational Medicine with Sohee Jeon, Jianbin Zheng and Pingping Song: "A modulator of wild-type glucocerebrosidase improves pathogenic phenotypes in dopaminergic neuronal models of Parkinson's disease." Highlighted in Feinberg News.
Wesley Peng passes his Ph.D. qualifying exam for NUIN (Northwestern University Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program) and is awarded the F30 NRSA Predoctoral fellowship from NIH (NIA)!
Yvette Wong and Wesley Peng publish in Developmental Cell, “Lysosomal Regulation of Inter-mitochondrial Contact Fate and Motility in Charcot-Marie-Tooth Type 2”. Highlighted in Feinberg news.
Niccolo Mencacci is awarded the Movement Disorders Fellowship from the Parkinson’s Foundation!
Yvette Wong is awarded the Distinguished Scholars Fellowship from the Warren Alpert Foundation which supports postdoctoral researchers of exceptional creativity in the basic neurosciences!
Soojin Kim is awarded the 2019 IBRO World Congress Travel Award from the Society of Neuroscience!