Mechanisms of Caspr2 antibodies

Summary

Principal Investigator: Eric Lancaster
Abstract: DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): This K08 career development award will facilitate the development of the PI into a clinician scientist with an independent research program focused on antibody mediated neurological disorders. The scientific program in this grant focuses on a disorder defined by antibodies to Caspr2, a protein expressed on axons in the central and peripheral nervous systems. The PI and his coworkers have recently reported that auto antibodies previously attributed to potassium channels actually target two potassium channel associated proteins, LGI1 and CASPR2 (Lai et al., 2010;Lancaster et al., 2011). Patients with antibodies to Caspr2 usually have encephalitis and/or peripheral nerve hyper-excitability. While patients with Caspr2 antibodies respond to immunotherapy, most have persistent cognitive disability. Genetic mutations in the gene encoding Caspr2 have been associated with Autism and other intellectual disabilities. During the 5 years of the award period, the mechanisms of antibodies to Caspr2 will be explored in order to guide research into new therapies, and to better understand the related genetic disorders. Aim 1 will explore the domains on the Caspr2 protein targeted by the antibodies and how these antibodies disrupt the interaction of Caspr2 with other neuronal proteins. Aim 2 will explore the effects of Caspr2 antibodies on central and peripheral nervous system axons. And Aim 3 will examine the factors protecting nerve axons from auto- antibodies. This will lead to improved treatments for these patients and better understanding of the functions of Caspr2. The PI will be guided by three mentors with distinct areas of expertise that are necessary to complete this project: Dr. Joseph Dalmau (antibody mediated disorders of the nervous system), Dr. Steven S. Scherer (peripheral nerve anatomy and histology) and Dr. Rita Balice-Gordon (synaptic physiology and anatomy). The scientific work will be completed in the laboratories of Drs. Schere and Balice-Gordon, which occupy adjacent space at the University of Pennsylvania. A training plan to assist the PI in developing new research skills is an integral part of this application. These skills will be acquired through specific course work, through "hands on" training by his mentors, and through presentation of his scientific work at meetings. Specific scientific skills include studies of immunology, auto-immune disorders, synaptic physiology and anatomy, and peripheral nerve anatomy and physiology. Since this project involves both human subjects and laboratory animals, specific training in the ethical concerns involved in both areas is integrated into the training plan. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Patients with auto antibodies to Caspr2 may have encephalitis (seizures, cognitive impairment) and/or peripheral nerve hyper excitability (resulting in debilitating muscle spasms). Genetic mutations in Caspr2 may cause autism and other intellectual disabilities. This project will explore the mechanisms of Caspr2 antibodies in order t find better therapies and to understand the role of Caspr2 in neuronal function.
Funding Period: 2012-09-15 - 2017-06-30
more information: NIH RePORT

Detail Information

Research Grants30

  1. Cardiac Myosin Binding Protein-C: Structure, Function, and Regulation
    David M Warshaw; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  2. Molecular Mechanisms of Fate Choice in Neural Stem Cells (P01)
    Charles D Stiles; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  3. Protein Mass Spectrometry Core Facility for Neuroscience
    Thomas A Neubert; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ....
  4. North American Mitochondrial Disease Consortium (NAMDC)
    JOHN L THOMPSON; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ....
  5. Intellectual and Development Disabilities Research Center
    Marc Yudkoff; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..5 million from NICHD). The Center includes an excess of 70 Penn faculty at 15 departments at the Schools of Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Nursing, the Wistar Institute, and the College of Arts and Sciences. ..
  6. Emory Alzheimer's Disease Center
    Allan I Levey; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  7. DRG engraftment of transduced mesenchymal stem cells to treat neuropathic pain
    Quinn H Hogan; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..Completion of the proposed work will establish the basis for therapeutic trials of engineered MSC as sources of these or other analgesic peptides in larger animals or human subjects. ..
  8. ENDOTHELIN CONTROL OF RENAL HEMODYNAMIC AND EXCRETORY FUNCTION
    David M Pollock; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..In particular, this Program will investigate a full range of mechanisms that control ET-1 release and receptor specific actions in order to provide clinically relevant information. ..
  9. Rocky Mountain Regional Center of Excellence or Biodefense and Emerging Infectiou
    John T Belisle; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  10. Regional, Synpatic, Cellular Modulation of Abeta Metabolism
    David M Holtzman; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  11. Plasticity at the Excitatory Synapse
    Richard L Huganir; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..Understanding these basic mechanisms of synaptic transmission and plasticity will provide insight into normal and abnormal brain function. ..
  12. Synaptic Function: Effects of the Nerve Injury, Repair, and Altered Activity
    Timothy C Cope; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..The Resume and Summary of Discussion above summarizes the final outcome of the group discussion. OVERALL PROGRAM EVALUATION ..
  13. Human Genome Sructural Variation
    Evan Eichler; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  14. HIV Tropism, Persistence, Inflammation and Neurocognition in Therapy Initiation
    RONALD I SWANSTROM; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..Collectively, these studies will bring a detailed understanding of viral replication and viral evolution, with the attendant issues of inflammation and neuronal damage, ..
  15. IDDRC at Children's Research Institute
    Vittorio Gallo; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..
  16. UMB Center for Pain Studies
    Susan G Dorsey; Fiscal Year: 2013
    ..abstract_text> ..