Internal Seminar: Saahil Acharya, Membrane Cooperativity Unit
Speaker: Saahil Acharya, PhD Student, Membrane Cooperativity Unit (Kusumi Unit)
Title: Understanding the regulation of synapse formation and function by adhesion molecules by single-molecule imaging
Neuroligins are synaptic adhesion molecules located in the post-synaptic membrane and form calcium-dependent trans-synaptic complexes with neurexins located in the presynaptic membrane. The trans-synaptic neuroligin-neurexin complexes have been proposed to regulate synaptic development and transmission
Using single-molecule imaging, I have found that the post-synaptic adhesion molecule Neuroligin forms transient dimers and oligomers on the plasma membrane. In the dendrites of neurons, these molecules enter and exit the spine with various dwell times. I will also discuss future experiments to study its pre-synaptic partner Neurexin, and to understand the implications of this in synaptic plasticity and regulation.
Following the seminar, please join us for free pizza, soft drinks, and scientific discussion from 5-5:30pm.