ULK2 is Essential for Degradation of Ubiquitinated Protein Aggregates and Homeostasis in Skeletal Muscle

PhD Candidate
Lira Lab
University of Iowa

The goal of this study is to understand how autophagy and other proteolytic processes are regulated in skeletal muscle, specifically looking at the Atg1 homologs, ULK1 and ULK2, as they play distinct roles in maintaining skeletal muscle homeostasis, morphology, protein aggregate degradation, and autophagy. These catabolic processes are often dysregulated in metabolic and skeletal muscle disorders such as type II diabetes, sarcopenia, and obesity. Understanding the molecular workings of these processes will help to maintain proper metabolism, muscle quality, and overall health thereby attenuating the negative side effects associated with these diseases.

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