Gabrielle Villafana

Gabrielle Villafana – UMass Trainee 2023-2025

Research progress: I am a PhD student in the Rauch lab studying the protein tau that aggregates and spreads throughout the brain in Alzheimer’s Disease. I am using a mouse model to investigate inhibitors of the receptor LRP1 that tau binds to in order to be endocytosed into the cell. During these past two years I developed my skills in cell culturing, stereotaxic surgery, mouse handling, AAV production, immunohistochemistry and fluorescence microscopy. In the last year have made progress in packaging shRNA and molecular inhibitors in AAV capsids and delivering to mice to analyze the effect on in vivo tau spread.