Protein conformations in cells. New techniques. Protein misfolding and aggregation. (Protein aggregation, fluorescence, polyglutamine, Huntington's Disease, Motor Neuron Disease)
Danny Hatters runs a program exploring how proteins change conformation in cells as part of normal and pathogenic processes, including those associated with misfolding and aggregation. Key elements of this research include the development and application of new fluorescence -based probes and biosensors to view protein dynamics in cells. His major area of research is in Huntington's Disease with other programs in motor neuron disease and cancer. He completed his PhD at the University of Melbourne in 2002. He then did a post doc at the Gladstone Institutes/University of California, San Francisco under the mentorship of Dr Karl Weisgraber for 5 years until 2007. There he studied how three variants of apolipoprotein E, apoE2, apoE3 and apoE4 differ in their conformation and biophysical properties as a basis for understanding the mechanisms underlying the elevated risk that the apoE4 isoform confers for Alzheimer's disease. In April 2007, he returned to Melbourne to take up a CR Roper Fellowship position in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. In 2009 he was awarded the Grimwade Fellowship to continue developing his own research program focusing on how protein conformations lead to cellular dysfunction and disease. In 2012, he was awarded an ARC Future Fellowship.
I supervise Honours, Masters and PhD students in basic biochemistry, cell biology and biophysics. My area of current research focus is on neurodegenerative disease related to protein folding and misfolding. I also develop new fluorescence-based methods to probe these processes.