Dr. Paul Chapple
Senior Lecturer, Centre for Endocrinology, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London
Dr. Chapple was awarded a PhD by University College London (UCL) in 1997. The majority of his postdoctoral research was undertaken in the laboratory of Professor Michael Cheetham at the Institute of Ophthalmology, UCL. Here he investigated the cell biology of molecular chaperone proteins linked to human diseases, particularly neurodegenerative disorders.
He also spent a year in the laboratory of Dr Jean-Marc Gallo at the MRC Centre for Neurodegeneration Research, Kings College London, where he worked on tau RNA processing and its impairment in neurodegeneration. In 2005 Dr Chapple moved to Barts and to London to start his own research group.
Dr. Chapple's research focuses on the biology of molecular chaperones. These proteins are important because they are crucial for the maintenance of cellular protein homeostasis (proteostasis) and other fundamental cellular processes. Moreover, some human diseases, including many neurodegenerative disorders, arise because of disrupted proteostasis, either caused by mutations, environmental factors, and/or defects in molecular chaperone systems.
Dr Chapple first became interested in the ARSACS protein, sacsin, because it has some similarities to known molecular chaperones. In 2007 he was funded by the Medical Research Council UK to investigate the cellular role of sacsin. In 2009 his group published the first scientific paper characterizing the sacsin protein, in the journal Human Molecular Genetics.