Paola Picotti (born 1977), a systems biologist, is an assistant professor at the Department of Biology. Born in Italy, Picotti came to ETH Zurich as a post-doctoral fellow in 2007 and is currently working on the biology of protein networks. She wants to use her ERC Starting Grant to develop new analytical techniques for testing protein structures that are prone to incorrect folding. In addition, she would like to demonstrate the consequences of misfolded proteins for the entire cell. These proteins are responsible for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's. “As part of the ERC project, we would also like to explore ways to stop or even reverse devastating degenerative processes,” Picotti explains. She expects that her project will bring about a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms of diseases caused by protein misfolding and agglutination. She also hopes that her ERC project will generate new options for diagnosis and treatment of these currently incurable diseases.
Source: ETH Life article "Eight young talents sponsored by the EU" published on 19 August 2013 (http://www.ethlife.ethz.ch/archive_articles/130819_erc_starting_grants_red/index_EN)
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