Lab News

 

 

 

 

 

 

                           Postdoctoral Fellow, Thomas

                           Stoeger, met up with Alex

                           Rodriguez Gama, who will be

                            joining the Morimoto Lab as a

                           Postdoctoral Fellow later in

                           2022, at the National Institutes

                            of Health Trainees meeting in

                            Bethesda, MD.

 

 

                            Congratulations to Morimoto

                            Lab graduating seniors Claire

                            Morton and Eirene Fithian!

                            They were awarded honors at

                            the 2022 Senior Thesis and

                            Awards Celebration on June 1. 

 

                            Eirene also won the David

                           Shemin Prize for Basic

                           Research for her senior honors

                            thesis.

 

                           Investigating the Link between

                           stress resilience and lipid

                           metabolism and  in the cbd-1

                           mutant in C. elegans

                           Claire Morton (Biology;  

                           Chemistry minor)

                           Mentor:  Ambre Sala

 

                           Establishing A Quantitative

                           Proteostasis Probe for

                           Neuronal Signaling Receptor

                           Trafficking Upon Protein

                            Aggregation

                            Eirene Fithian (Biology;

                            Science in Human Culture) 

                            Mentor:  Anan Yu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            Congratulations to Xiaojing

                            Sui for receiving a Post-

                           Doctoral Fellowship from the 

                            National Ataxia Foundation.

 

 

 

                            Congratulations to Laura Bott

                            for her talk, A metastable

                            protein conformational switch

                           reveals cell state transitions in

                           aging and stress at the 27th

                            Annual Midwest Stress and

                            Molecular Chaperone Meeting

                            in January 2022. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            Congratulations to Laura Bott

                            for her talk, A metastable

                            protein conformational switch

                            reveals cell state transitions in

                           aging and stress, at the

                            Chicago Area Worm Meeting

                            in December 2021.

                            Happy Holidays from the

                            Morimoto Lab to you! View

                            pictures of our holiday party

                            here.

                            Congratulations to Rogan

                            Grant for his article in Nature, 

                            Circuits between infected   

                            macrophages and T cells in

                            SARS CoV-2 pneumonia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            Congratulations to Ambre

                            Sala for her article in Trends in

                            Cell Biology, Protecting the

                            future: balancing proteostasis

                            for reproduction

 

 

 

 

 

                            Congratulations to Laura Bott

                            for her talk, A metastable

                            protein conformational switch

                            reveals cell state transitions in

                           aging and stress, at the Young

                           Scientist Symposium on

                           Protein Quality Control on

                           September 24, 2021!

 

 

                            The lab held the annual

                            Morimoto Open in August

                            and this year's champion was

                            Thomas Stoeger. Max Felland

                            was the Runner Up.

                            Congratulations to everyone

                            for their well-played matches.

 

                            View more photos of the

                            Morimoto Open here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            The annual Undergraduate

                            Symposium took place in

                            August with undergraduate

                            students presenting their

                            summer research. 

 

 

 

 

 

                            Max Felland and Cindy Zhao

                            pictured.

 

                            Meet the undergraduates of

                            the Morimoto Lab 2021-2022 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            The Morimoto Lab members

                            gathered for the annual group

                            photo in early August. More

                            photos available under the

                            Group Photos tab.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lab _with masks (1).JPG
MURS poster 2021.jpg
Max.jpg
Cindy.jpg
Thomas champ_Runner up Max2.JPG
Screen Shot 2021-09-29 at 12.00.30 PM.png
AmbreSalaTrendsinCellBio2021.jpg
Screen Shot 2021-10-28 at 11.59.55 AM.png
Chicago area worm meeting.png
MWSM_horizontal_FINAL[2].jpg
NAF-Horizontal-Logo.png
Undergrad symposium_May2 022[35].jpg
Eirene Fithian and Claire Morton_senoir honors Jun 2022.jpg
thomas stoeger 2022.jpg
Final Morimoto-lab-logo_wink_3.gif

We study the regulation of the heat shock response and the function of molecular chaperones and the proteostasis network to maintain the functional health of the proteome, to ensure optimal cellular health and to promote longevity. Our current interests are: to understand how different tissues in C. elegans sense diverse forms of environmental and physiological stress and communicate proteotoxic stress signals between tissues to determine organismal health, to determine the mechanisms by which proteostasis collapse occurs in aging and the relationship between proteostasis failure and other markers of aging.  These observations are used to study cell stress responses and proteostasis in patient-derived direct differentiated neurons to develop small molecule strategies to restore the proteostasis network to delay or prevent proteome mismanagement that occurs in Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, ALS and other protein folding disorders.

C. elegans through the microscope
C. elegans through the microscope

C. elegans viewed through the microscope at the Morimoto Lab

press to zoom
Charlie, Sue, Rick, and Kyoko
Charlie, Sue, Rick, and Kyoko

Dr. Rick Morimoto and Lab Manager, Sue Fox, celebrate the graduation of Charlie Stark and Kyoko Kohno in June 2021.

press to zoom
Image from the Morimoto Laboratory collection by Jesper Pedersen of neuron polyglutamine aggregates
Image from the Morimoto Laboratory collection by Jesper Pedersen of neuron polyglutamine aggregates

press to zoom
C. elegans through the microscope
C. elegans through the microscope

C. elegans viewed through the microscope at the Morimoto Lab

press to zoom
1/8

The Proteostasis Network

Protein Quality Control (PQC) is regulated by the Proteostasis Network (PN) that controls protein synthesis, folding, transport and degradation of all proteins to ensure their stability and function. We study the properties and regulation of cell stress responses, molecular chaperones, the ubiquitin-proteasome and autophagy-lysosome system at the organismal level using C. elegans and in patient derived induced neurons to examine the mechanisms of proteotoxicity in cells and tissues against proteotoxic damage.

Aging Biology

Aging is associated with the appearance and accumulation of non-native proteins with folded states that are highly aggregation-prone and amyloidogenic. We are interested in the molecular basis of quality control failure in aging, that we have termed Proteostasis Collapse, which is associated with a functional decline in specific arms of the PN leading to protein aggregation.

Proteostasis in Neurodegenerative Diseases

Alzheimer's disease, ALS, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, Frontal Temporal Dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases are all associated with age-dependent protein aggregation and cellular dysfunction.  We have used both C. elegans and induced neurons to discover how protein misfolding and aggregates interferes with cellular function and to discover small molecules that enhance chaperone expression and function. 

The Heat Shock Response

All cells (and organisms) respond to environmental stress such as elevated temperatures and other abiotic stressors by activation of HSF1 and selective transcriptional activation of molecular chaperones and other components of the PN.  In isolated cells in tissue culture, the heat shock response (HSR) is regulated cell autonomously but in C. elegans, the HSR is regulated cell non-autonomously by the AFD sensory neuron to confer cellular healthspan and lifespan.

The Proteostasis Consortium

We share an NIH Program Project Grant from NIA on Proteostasis of Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases together with Judith Frydman (Stanford), Jeff Kelly (Scripps), Steve Finkbeiner (UCSF), and Dan Finley (Harvard).  Additional information on our research and the Proteostasis Consortium Wednesday Seminars be found at https://www.proteostasisconsortium.com/.

Welcome to the Morimoto Lab

Contact Us

 

Please send cover letters, CVs, research plans, and other relevant documents to rebecca.phend@northwestern.edu if you'd like to apply to join the lab.