Avi Samelson awarded Alzheimer's Association Research Fellowship

Avi Samelson, Kampmann lab

Avi Samelson, postdoc in the Kampmann lab, was awarded the Alzheimer’s Association’s Research Fellowship. (He declined since he recently also received the NIH Kirschstein Postdoctoral National Research Service Award.) Avi's goal is to systematically understand the factors that control disease-associated aggregation of the protein tau in neurons. Tau aggregation is a hallmark of Alzheimer's Disease and other neurodegenerative diseases, and mutations in tau cause familial dementia - however tau only aggregates in specific types of neurons. Therefore a combination of factors, including tau sequence features and the cellular environment, must control tau aggregation. Avi established a model for aggregation of the protein tau in human iPSC-derived neurons and devised a two-pronged strategy to elucidate sequence features (by deep mutational scanning) and cellular factors (by CRISPRi/a modifier screens) that control tau aggregation. His research has the potential to uncover new therapeutic strategies for Alzheimer's Disease and other tauopathies. Congratulations, Avi!