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Humanities & Neuroscience

Cell Biology of Neurodegeneration

Organizers: Francesca Bartolini (Columbia) and Franck Polleux (Columbia)

This symposium will tackle some of the cellular mechanisms that go awry in neurodegenerative diseases, with special emphasis on how innovative cell biological approaches promise to decipher the pathogenetic events underlying these devastating conditions.


9:00 – 9:40 am Registration and Poster Set-up

9:40 – 9:55 am Welcome and Overview: David Freedberg (Italian Academy, Columbia), Francesco Genuardi (Consul General of Italy) and Francesca Bartolini (Columbia)

10:00 – 10:30 am Subhoijt Roy (University of Wisconsin - Madison)
“Physiologic role of alpha-synuclein at synapses”

10:35 – 11:05 am Casper Hoogenraad (Genentech)
“Feedback-driven mechanisms drive axon initial segment assembly and neuronal polarity”

11:10 – 11:30 am Break

11:35 – 12:05 pm Victoria Bolotina (Boston University)
“Novel cellular determinants of Parkinson’s disease”

12:10 – 12:40 pm Xiaoyi Qu (graduate student, laboratory of Francesca Bartolini, Columbia)
“Microtubule dynamics at pre-synaptic contacts are modulated by neuronal activity and affected by synaptic injury”

12:45 – 1:45 pm Break

1:50 – 2:20 pm Erika Holzbaur (University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine)
“Trafficking along the axon: mechanisms regulating express shipping and local delivery”

2:25 – 2:55 pm Ana Maria Cuervo (Albert Einstein College of Medicine)
“Selective autophagy in the fight against neurodegeneration”

3:00 – 3:30 pm Chandana Kondapalli (postdoctoral research scientist, laboratory of Franck Polleux, Columbia)
“Aβ42 oligomers trigger synaptic loss through AMPK-dependent activation of mitochondrial fission and mitophagy “

3:35 – 4:45 pm Break / Posters

4:50 – 5:00 pm Intro to Keynote Speaker and Concluding Remarks: Franck Polleux (Columbia)

5:05 – 5:55 pm Keynote: Pietro De Camilli (Yale University and Howard Hughes Medical Institute)
“Intracellular Membrane Contact Sites, Lipid Dynamics and Neurodegeneration”

Co-sponsors: Glenn Foundation for Medical Research; NanoString; Nikon; Parkinson’s Foundation; Sartorius; Thermo Fisher Scientific

Call for POSTERS
Deadline: October 26

Faculty members, postdocs, and graduate students are encouraged to present a poster.
Display space is limited, so please act soon. The deadline is Oct. 26.
Submit your poster or draft to
with this subject line: "Poster Submission Nov. 27 [YourLastName]".
Dimensions: 48" wide x 36" tall.
Presenters are welcome to use existing posters.