Sigurdsson Laboratory

Research in the Sigurdsson Laboratory focuses on pathogenesis, therapy and diagnosis of age-related degenerative diseases, in particular Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and to some extent prion diseases and type-2 diabetes. In these protein conformational disorders, a normal protein is converted to a pathological form with a high β-sheet structure. The scientific theme of the laboratory is to study this conformational alteration, its consequences at the molecular- and functional level which includes various behavioral analyses, and the factors involved in this process. Most of the studies involve therapeutic targeting of this pathway, focusing initially on the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide and the prion protein but more recently on the tau protein and the islet amyloid polypeptide.  These experiments have provided very promising results in mice and by examining further the mechanism of these therapeutic effects we will hopefully better understand the pathogenesis of these diseases. Currently, a major focus of the laboratory is to target the precursors of neurofibrillary tangles as a therapy for AD.