Maria Vera Ugalde
Assistant Professor, Biochemistry
Email: maria.veraugalde [at] mcgill.ca
Research Areas: gene expression regulation, heat-stress, neurodegeneration
The lab investigates how eukaryotic cells survive to stress conditions that threat cell functionality. We study stress-dependent changes in the gene expression of the Heat Shock Proteins (HSPs). Their expression is tailored to the level of protein damage to maintain protein homeostasis and recover cell functionality. We use single-molecule fluorescence microscopy approaches to quantify the contribution of each step in the HSP mRNA life-cycle to the outcome of the stress response. These approaches are combined with biochemical and genetic methods to identify the regulators of the HSP’s expression in different model systems and understand how the deregulation of HSP’s leads to diverse diseases, like neurodegeneration.