Project: Stress responses in ALS
Life in the Lab
I am interested in astrocytes – cells that surround neurons, providing them with support and protecting them from damage. For reasons we dont fully understand, astrocytes in ALS patients are unable to support motor neurons and actually release chemicals that contribute towards motor neuron death.
I make astrocytes from ALS patients skin cells that have been turned into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). I then stress out these cells a dish and compare the astrocytes made from ALS patients with those from healthy people. From these experiments we hope to find the molecular abnormalities that occur in ALS patient astrocytes, so that in future drugs can be designed to fix them.
Life outside the Lab
I am a keen runner and enjoy travelling, music and the theatre.
Camilla Højland Knudsen
Visiting PhD student