Theses Doctoral

Spatially resolved molecular dysfunction in the prefrontal cortex of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

Petrescu, Joana

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia (ALS-FTD) represents a spectrum of neurodegenerative disease with clinical presentations ranging from progressive paralysis to cognitive impairment. Approximately 15% of ALS-FTD patients initially presenting with motor symptoms also receive a diagnosis of dementia, but a majority of these patients demonstrate some level of cognitive impairment over the course of disease. Identifying molecular pathways that contribute to the development of cognitive deficits in ALS-FTD has thus far been limited by the quality of clinical information and postmortem tissue preservation as well as available technologies.

This thesis aims to investigate early stages of cognitive involvement in ALS-FTD using postmortem tissues from a cohort of non-demented ALS patients who have had cognitive and pathological phenotyping. Spatially resolved transcriptome profiling of prefrontal cortex tissues from this cohort identifies dysregulated pathways in non-motor regions, contributing to our understanding of molecular perturbations underlying cognitive impairment in ALS-FTD.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Biological Sciences
Thesis Advisors
Phatnani, Hemali P.
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
January 18, 2023