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Aseer Intisar
Aseer Intisar(Aseer Intisar) 저자 이메일 보기
DGIST
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조회 1068  인쇄하기 주소복사 트위터 공유 페이스북 공유 
An electroceutical approach enhances myelination via upregulation of lipid biosynthesis in the dorsal root ganglion

1. You recently published a paper, in the journal “Biofabrication, (2022) Vol. 14 No. 1 : 015017. doi: 10.1088/1758-5090/ac457c”, titled “An electroceutical approach enhances myelination via upregulation of lipid biosynthesis in the dorsal root ganglion”.

- Can you please briefly summarize this paper?
- Can you please tell us the main difficulties you had in the laboratory work and how you overcame them?

Summary of the paper: Several peripheral demyelinating neuropathies, such as Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, lack any approved treatment, despite several attempts using pharmacological drugs. One of the major drawbacks of pharmacological drugs is the non-targeted nature of their application. In contrast, electroceuticals are more compatible for targeted application. Furthermore, the electrical impulse matches the communication language of our nervous system. Therefore, we were interested about the potential of electroceuticals to enhance the myelination in the peripheral nervous system (PNS). This work demonstrates the enhancement of myelination via electrical stimulation (ES) in the dorsal root ganglion, an ex vivo model of the PNS. The enhanced myelination resulted from upregulation in lipid biosynthesis and better structural lipid abundance in the myelin membrane. We confirmed the results from immunocytochemistry, RNA-sequencing, qPCR and chemical assays at sequential stages of the myelination process, followed by the analysis of myelin lipids via time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry. In the future, we aim to explore the mechanistic pathways of myelination-enhancing effects of ES in order to recognize its value as translational medicine towards human use.

Main difficulties with laboratory work: One of the difficulties was the sensitivity of neuron cells. Since neuron cells are so sensitive, it took a lot of practice to learn the method for handling them. My Bachelor’s degree was not in a biological field, so learning the delicacies of the neuronal experiments was very exciting for me. Another difficulty was the long duration for the myelination process (~30 days), which can create bottlenecks in the subsequent experiments. I learned to deal with that by having a robust and detailed experimental plan. It was also necessary to have a backup plan such that one failed step did not hamper the rest of the experimental pipeline. During the experiments, our collaborators also offered their kind expertise to troubleshoot any kind of issues.
 

2. Please introduce your laboratory, university or organization to bio-researchers in Korea.

I am currently an integrated MS/PhD student in the BioDr Lab in the Department of New Biology at DGIST. Our specialization includes translational research fields such as stimulation-based rejuvenation, organ-on-a-chip, cancer diagnostics and immunotherapy. Among these topics, I am working with stimulation-based rejuvenation, specifically the application of electroceuticals to treat demyelinating neuropathies. When I joined the lab in 2017, I had very little knowledge or experience in this field. Since that point, I had a lot of learning opportunities to develop my study design, experimental techniques and scientific writing ability. My supervisor guided me towards raising my research quality, while also giving me enough freedom to build my own ideas. Thanks to my helpful lab members, I was able to adjust smoothly to this lab and carry forward with my graduate student life.

DGIST is a relatively young research-oriented university with the ideology to advance science and technology through convergence of disciplines. It offers state-of-the-art research facilities and innovative laboratories led by expert faculty members. Furthermore, since DGIST offers full scholarships, it reduces the burden on graduate students and allows them to focus on their education.
 

3. Can you provide some advice for younger scientists who have plans to study abroad or who have plans to study in Korea?

The environment for science and technology in Korea is currently world-class. Since there are so many universities in Korea with diverse research specialties, there might be several labs that would fit the research interests of the expected applicants. I would recommend the applicants to search thoroughly to find the labs according to their interests. Additionally, many universities, such as DGIST, offer full scholarships in graduate school. I would recommend the expected applicants to be aware of the scholarships and application deadlines so that they don’t have to worry about financial burden while pursuing higher education.

4. Future plan?

I intend to continue my work on electroceutical treatments for demyelinating and neuromuscular neuropathies. My eventual goal is to develop easily accessible bioelectronic medicines for patients who suffer from these neuropathies which manifest due to aging, injury or inherited genetic disorders. I also intend to carry out Postdoctoral research in a top quality institute abroad so that I can come back with that experience and join as faculty in a Korean university.

5. Do you have anything else that you would like to tell Korean scientists and students?

I have been a student in Korea for over 8 years, so I have been lucky enough to be involved in the evolution of technological and scientific progress in Korea. While Korea is going through a very successful phase in its scientific journey, I think there is still a long way to go. Therefore, as individuals we should keep taking those small steps that will combine be a huge leap for the whole community.

#electroceuticals #myelination #dorsal root ganglion
Category: Neuroscience, Biotechnology, Biochemistry
등록일 2022-01-20
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