A research team led by Prof. ZHANG Mingjie, Kerry Holdings Professor of Science in the Division of Life Science at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), has employed a novel biochemical reconstitution approach to show how proteins in postsynaptic density (PSD) are regulated in synapses to process and transmit brain signals, which may provide insights into further research on early detection and intervention of mental disorders such as autism and schizophrenia.


Synapses, the structure that allows neurons to pass signals to one another, are essential to neuronal function. Proper formation and responses to stimulation of synapses are fundamental to brain functions, but to understand what governs the formation and regulation of compartmentalized synaptic assemblies is difficult, as the number of synapses in an entire brain is enormous and it is hard to find two identical synapses – there is no simple repeating structural unit within synapses. Read More... 


Prof. ZHANG (left) and Dr. ZENG (right) observe the synaptic protein interaction pattern in their laboratory
Scientific Breakthroughs & Discoveries