In our aging society, more and more people suffer from neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Decades of research have focused on mouse models, but all drug candidates that have successfully treated AD in mice have failed in human clinical trials. In order to address these pressing needs, human models such as neurons, astrocytes, and microglia derived from induced pluripotent stem cells are the key. In combination with gene editing using CRISPR-Cas9 these cellular models provide insights into early disease development and progression in the species we need to investigate: humans.
Note: Reading materials regarding important molecular biology and/or genetics concepts needed for the course will be available before semester start so students can consult or study them if in doubt.