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Affiliation: Northeastern Illinois University

Dr. Cindy Voisine is an Associate Professor of Biology at Northeastern Illinois University. She obtained her PhD in Biomolecular Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin at Madison with Dr. Elizabeth Craig where she studied the role of molecular chaperones in mitochondrial protein import. Dr. Voisine found that the motor function of the mitochondrial Hsp70 cannot be explained by passive trapping alone but includes an essential ATP-dependent interaction with the mitochondrial peripheral protein Tim44 to generate a pulling force and unfold preproteins. Dr. Voisine applied the fundamental principles of protein folding to neurodegenerative disease research during her postdoctoral training in the laboratories of Dr. Anne Hart and Dr. Richard Morimoto. During this time, she identified a subnetwork of chaperones that safeguards proteostasis in aging and neurodegenerative disease. Currently, she investigates the molecular mechanisms of protein misfolding diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease using C. elegans as a model system.

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