Ph.D. Univ. of Massachusetts
We focus on two interrelated research projects: (1) functional characterization of the A2A adenosine receptor (A2AR) and (2) development of novel therapeutic treatment for degenerative diseases including Huntington’s disease (HD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and Alzheimer’s disease (AD).
A2AR is a major target of caffeine, the most widely used psychoactive substance in the world. My laboratory started from the cloning of this receptor many years ago, and have extend our research interests into the regulation and signal transduction of A2AR under pathophysiological conditions, especially in neurodegenerative diseases. We have also set out to identify and delineate novel pathogeneses (e.g., Galectins-mediated neuroinflammation and abnormal GABAergic signaling) in diseased brains so that better treatments can be designed.
In addition, we developed a group of adenosine analogues targeting simultaneously at A2AR and an adenosine transporter (ENT1). These compounds can enter the brain to enhance the adenosine tone, and can be used to treat mouse models of at least five protein aggregation diseases (including HD, ALS, SCA3, SCA7, AD, and Niemann-Pick type C disease). Results of our findings have led to the application and approvals of patents on applying these compounds to the development of therapeutic treatments for neurodegenerative diseases.
The Impact of Dysregulated microRNA Biogenesis Machinery and microRNA Sorting on Neurodegenerative DiseasesInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences, Feb 08, 2023
Deletion of equilibrative nucleoside transporter 2 disturbs energy metabolism and exacerbates disease progression in an experimental model of Huntington's diseaseNeurobiology of Disease, Jan 17, 2023