Kristian studies microglia, the resident macrophages of the brain, and their role in tau protein pathology characteristic of Alzheimer's Disease (AD). Aggregates of misfolded tau protein form inside neurons and can spread to other nearby neurons by releasing "seeds". In general, microglia are known to clear toxic protein aggregates in neurodegenerative disease, but exactly how they interact with tau "seeds" is not well known. Kristian's research is focused on uncovering the cellular and molecular processes employed by microglia to either mitigate or propagate tau spread in AD.
B.S., Biotechnology, University of Houston