Angela Santiago Aranda

I am a Ph.D. student at Amsterdam UMC (location AMC) under the supervision of Dr. Eric Reits (Amsterdam UMC) and Dr. Willeke van Roon-Mom (LUMC). For my bachelor’s, I studied biotechnology at the University of Leon (Spain) with an Erasmus exchange to the Vrije Universiteit of Amsterdam. There, I completed a neuroscience minor and an internship at the Center for Neurogenomics and Cognitive Research (CNCR, Amsterdam) on the role of the membrane phospholipid phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate in the synaptic vesicle cycle using mouse primary cell cultures as models.

My interest in neuroscience motivated me to deepen my knowledge, so I joined the research master’s program Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the Universiteit van Amsterdam, where I had the chance to gain research experience with two research projects and a literature thesis. My first project aimed to understand the role of the insulin-degrading enzyme on the pathogenesis of Huntington’s Disease using cell models. My second project focused on the role of pericytes, a mural cell type, in the course of acute ischemic stroke and reperfusion using human brain tissue. Finally, I reviewed the heterogeneity of pericytes in the central nervous system and its functional changes in aging.

Within the CureQ consortium, I am involved in the generation of Huntington’s Disease isogenic models and in the creation of a model landscape (WP1). Once this milestone is reached, I will be working on the validation of the cell model landscape with already available patients lines (WP3) and the evaluation of therapeutic strategies (WP4).