Anne Wentink

Anne's scientific work in one sentence

How molecular chaperones combat the toxic aggregation of proteins associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease

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Short CV

University Studies: Bachelor of Science, 2010, University College London, UK
PhD: 2015, University College London, UK
Current Position: Postdoctoral researcher in the group of Prof. Bernd Bukau, at the ZMBH and DKFZ Heidelberg

What is - in your opinion - your best publication?

Wentink AS, Nillegoda NB, Feufel J, Ubartaite G, Schneider CP, De los Rios P, Hennig J, Barducci A, Bukau B, Molecular dissection of amyloid disaggregation by the human Hsp70 chaperone, Nature, in press (2020)

What are your most important prizes?

PhD Studentship, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
FASEB poster prize (1st place), 2018 FASEB research conference “Protein folding in the cell”, Olean, New York, USA

5 questions about research - past, present, future

1. What are your primary tasks and responsibilities in your actual position?
Designing and performing experiments, analysing data and writing publications. I also supervise three talented PhD students that work on related projects.

2. What is it that gives you pleasure and/or satisfaction the most?
Stumbling upon a creative solution to a scientific problem that has been bothering me for a long time.

3. Which research question(s) affects you at the moment? What is its social significance?
Currently I am investigating whether the action of molecular chaperones on protein aggregates as seen in Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative conditions is beneficial to health or poses a potential threat by accelerating the spreading of the condition. This will be important question to address before we can explore the use of molecular chaperone as therapeutic targets in neurodegeneration.

4. Which publication influenced you the most?
“Real-time observation of Trigger Factor function on translating ribosomes”, Kaiser et al., Nature, 2006. I must have read this paper at least 50 times during my PhD. As trained structural biologist it motivated me to learn more biochemical and biophysical techniques and as a consequence, I joined the laboratory of Bernd Bukau at the ZMBH/DKFZ Heidelberg.

5. What do you like most about AMPro? What are your particular plans within the collaboration?
The opportunity to interact with scientists outside my own area of expertise. The variety of topics and disciplines that are a part of AMPro network mean that I always learn something new at AMPro meetings.

3 questions beyond research

1. What is the experience during your PhD you will remember all your life?
My now husband volunteering to clean the glassware while I finished up experiments late at night after returning from our first date.

2. Which book and/or movie has lately affected you the most?
The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro. Its overarching theme of the role of remembering in society and in personal relationships hits particularly close to home given my research focus on neurodegeneration and dementia.

3. What is your favorite color, season and/or football (or other sports) club?
My favorite color is burgundy. I enjoy the freshness in the air as we transition to fall after a long sluggish summer.