Donmez Selected by Ellison for New Scholar in Aging Award

Gizem Donmez, PhD, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience and a member of the Neuroscience and Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics graduate programs has received a New Scholar in Aging award from the Ellison Medical Foundation. Her work, entitled "Investigating the Heat Shock Response in Aging Mammalian Brain", focuses on molecular mechanisms by which the heat shock response influences aging. A brief synopsis is given below.

Aging is associated with a decrease in the ability of cells to cope with environmental challenges. The decline in the capacity to respond stress is a major factor in the process of aging and senescence. This has been shown for various forms of stress such as heat shock, hypoxia and oxidative insult. Heat shock response is delayed and reduced in aging organisms. Heat shock response induces the expression of heat shock proteins, composed of chaperones and proteases. The attenuation of the heat shock response during aging may be responsible for the accumulation of damaged proteins as well as abnormal regulation of cell death. In this study, we aim to investigate the mechanism behind the attenuation of heat shock response during aging.

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