Department of Chemical Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, India
Title of the talk:
Dr. Maiti’s laboratory investigates biophysically tractable yet biologically interesting systems, using (mostly) spectroscopic and imaging tools. The recent focus has been on two problems: protein misfolding/aggregation, and vesicular neurotransmission. Both of these interface with the phenomenon of amyloid-induced neuro-degeneration.
Alzheimer’s Amyloid beta is a small peptide, and therefore expected to be more tractable at a molecular level compared to typical proteins. Yet it is uniquely interesting in the biological context. Dr.Maiti’s team has developed single molecule level fluorescence tools specifically suited for studying amyloid misfolding and aggregation. On the other hand, vesicular neurotransmission is a multifaceted phenomena and therefore difficult to simplify beyond the level of single neurons. However, monoaminergic vesicles can be tracked with unique label-free imaging techniques that they have developed in the lab. In addition, the development of biophotonic instrumentation and methodology has been a frequent offshoot of his work in the lab.