Investigating the role of NEK1 in MND

To understand more about how a loss of function of the NEK1 protein may contribute to the development of MND


PhD Student: Natalie Pye

Principal Investigator: Dr Andrew Grierson

Lead Institution: University of Sheffield

MND Association Funding: £88,475*

Funding dates: March 2021 - February 2024

*Supported by the Yorkshire Dales MND Association Branch

About the project

Mutations in the NEK1 gene are predicted to cause less NEK1 protein to be produced, thus not enough to do its job. The aim of this project is to understand why loss of NEK1 function causes MND by investigating precisely what NEK1 does and how it might connect to the cellular waste disposal process called autophagy. This knowledge could be used to investigate ways to correct the defects caused by loss of functional NEK1 protein in neurons and potentially reveal new therapeutic targets.

What does this mean for people living with MND?

Discovering the underlying causes of MND will aid in the development of a treatment and this project will improve current understanding of how NEK1 might contribute to motor neuron damage in the disease. The findings from this project could highlight new possible therapeutic targets.


Want to find out more about the project or the researchers? Check out the resources below:

Coming soon!

Project code: 895-792

For further information and support contact our MND Connect helpline

mndconnect 0808 802 6262