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Christian Bjerggaard Vægter

Research

Research activities are focused towards the functional characterization of a family of neuronal type-1 receptors denoted Sortilins (or Vps10p-domain receptors). This receptor family comprises sortilin, SorLA, SorCS1, SorCS2 and SorCS3, which are differentially expressed in neuronal as well as non-neuronal tissues. The Sortilins are involved in several neuronal trafficking and sorting events such as synaptic targeting of neurotrophic factors and their cognate receptors.

Upon injury on peripheral sensory nerves, neurotrophins are released in the spinal cord from activated glia cells. Through a series of signaling events this ultimately results in altered ion homeostasis in spinal cord neurons, impairment of GABA’ergic inhibition and hence the induction of a condition of persistent pain known as neuropathic pain. On-going studies on transgenic mice deficient in individual Sortilins reveal that these receptors partake in critical steps of the signaling cascades resulting in the development of neuropathic pain.  

Using a broad repertoire of molecular, cellular and genetic tools we aim to identify biological pathways regulated by the Vps10p-domain receptors in neuropathic pain development and maintenance as well as neuronal regeneration following peripheral nerve injury.

Research interests

Sortilins in:

  • Development and maintenance of neuropathic pain pathways in the spinal cord and peripheral sensory neurons.
  • Neuronal regeneration following nerve injury.
  • Myelination /re-myelination.
  • Axon guidance and growth cone collaps.
  • Synaptic plasticity.

Methodologies

  • Molecular and cellular biology.
  • Primary neuronal cultures and explants.
  • Signaling pathways, axon guidance and growth cone collapse.
  • Microsurgical models of nerve injury and neuropathic pain.
  • Sensory tests.
  • Confocal microscopy.

Collaborators and centres

  • The Lundbeck Foundation Research center MIND, Aarhus University, Denmark.
  • Danish Pain Research Center, Aarhus University, Denmark.
  • Dr. Yves de Koninck, Centre de recherche Université Laval Robert-Giffard, Canada.
  • Dr. Stefano Geuna, Neuroscience Institute Cavalieri Ottolenghi (NICO), Torino, Italy

Research group members

  • Christian Vægter (Associate Professor)
  • Lone Tjener Pallesen (Associate Professor)
  • Debbie Winther Lemming (technician)
  • Mette Richner (postdoc)
  • Maj Ulrichsen (PhD student)
  • Ruthe Dieu (Master student)
  • Sara Jager (Master student)  

Group leader

Publications

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Revideret 20.09.2017