How do fibrils form?
Fibrils are implicated in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Using gold nanoparticles to ‘freeze’ peptides at the point they start to form fibrils can give us valuable insight into how these damaging particles form. This study was conducted at the undergraduate institution, State University of New York – Geneseo College, with a very limited research budget. In order to conduct a good quality study, the method was carefully designed and a good amount of time spent on the data analyses, combining a mathematical approach with chemical knowledge. Using gold nanoparticles allowed the team to demonstrate how proteins bond to each other.
Kazushige Yokoyama earned his degree of BS/MS from Kobe University (Japan) and PhD from the University of Colorado at Boulder (USA). He completed a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Minnesota (USA). He is currently a Professor of Chemistry at the State University of New York Geneseo College (USA).
Akane Ichiki is currently a senior undergraduate student at the State University of New York Geneseo College (USA) under the Biochemistry Program. She has co-authored four publications on the nano-interface structure of amyloidogenic peptides.