Asma Zaidi, PhD
Professor of Biochemistry
Research Interests: Parkinson's Disease and Dopamine Neuronal Death
Dr. Zaidi has identified that the plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase (PMCA) plays a critical role in DA neuron degeneration in PD. Utilizing human postmortem tissue, cell culture and mouse models of PD, she has shown that aging and exposure to neurotoxins lowers endogenous levels/activity of the PMCA 2 in the substantia nigra, and the inactivation of this calcium transporting enzyme causes selective cell death of dopaminergic neurons in PD. This work is focused in translational research as it defines potential sites for pathological failure and therapeutic intervention in PD.