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Of interest in my research is the interaction between two proteins that are important in driving synapse formation: PSD-95 and Slitrk2. PSD-95 is a pivotal post-synaptic scaffolding protein in excitatory neurons, and an intracellular binding partner for Slitrk2. PSD-95 and Slitrk2 colocalize at synapses in mouse brain. While there is a lot of data on the relevance and importance of Slitrks, the role of PSD-95 in this interaction is not well understood. My research aims to test whether PSD-95 affects Slitrk2's trafficking to synapses. Understanding how Slitrk2 is trafficked to the synapse and anchored there is important for gaining a better understanding of the trafficking of similar molecules to the synapses, and the formation of synapses overall. These interactions are also medically relevant as both Slitrk2 and PSD-95 have been linked to a number of neurological conditions such as Bipolar disorder, Autism, and Schizophrenia.
Kanjanda, Simbarashe, "Investigating Protein Interactions Important for Synapse Formation in the Developing Brain" (2022). Biology Honors Papers. 48.