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Marc Bolliger

Marc Bolliger, Ph.D.

Staff Scientist

PhD in Natural Sciences from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH)Diploma in Natural Sciences from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH)

I joined the Parkinson's Institute as a Staff Scientist in summer 2013. My projects focus on identifying the kinases and phosphatases that regulate LRRK2.

I earned my Ph.D. in biochemistry from ETH Zürich in 2001. Under the supervision of Dr. Sergio Gloor I discovered two neuroligin genes encoding cell adhesion proteins localized at the synapse. One of them, neuroligin 4, became the first gene shown to be implicated in autism. While working as a Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Peter Sonderegger's lab at University of Zürich, I investigated neurotrypsin, a neuronal protease associated with mental retardation. Based on the analysis of transgenic and knockout mice we succeeded in identifying the substrate of neurotrypsin, namely agrin, and a developmental analysis of these mice demonstrated that this proteolytic event regulates the maturation of the neuromuscular junction. Then I joined Dr. Thomas Südhof's lab at Stanford University to follow up on my graduate work. We identified a novel point mutation in neuroligin 4 in autistic patients and demonstrated that this mutation impairs protein folding. In addition, I screened for ligands of a brain-specific G-protein coupled receptor, and studied its signaling upon binding of these ligands.

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