Title

Analysis of the Sub-Cellular Location and Behavioral Consequences of C1QL3 Synaptic Protein

Document Type

Article

Major

Molecular & Cell Biology

Mentor

Prof. David Martinelli, Dept. of Neuroscience (UCHC)

Disciplines

Medical Cell Biology | Neurosciences

Abstract

The protein C1QL3 is expressed by neurons in the brain and is proposed to be a synaptic adhesion protein; a type of molecule thought to be important for synapse formation, maintenance, and function. Mutations in the genes that encode for synaptic adhesion proteins are thought to contribute to neuropsychiatric pathology. As C1QL3 is hypothesized to function by creating a 3-partner trans-synaptic adhesion complex, the aim of this project was to demonstrate the colocalization of C1QL3 and the NPTX1 protein (one of the binding partners) at the same synapses using super resolution microscopy. This immunolocalization study is the first step towards visualizing this putative3-partner protein complex in synapses. If successful, it would help elucidate the molecular mechanisms of C1QL3, providing insight into the pathological processes of neuropsychiatric diseases and aid in the identification of key targets for pharmaceutical intervention. Additionally, to assess C1QL3’s function in modulating behavior, an attentional set shifting study was performed. This was to gauge the cognitive function of mice lacking, normally expressing, or over-expressing C1QL3.

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