I lead the Human Brain Disease Modelling research lab at the A.I.Virtanen Institute for Molecular Sciences where I work as a Sigrid Jusélius Senior Research Fellow.
My focus in recent years has been to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurological diseases, especially Parkinson`s disease, schizophrenia and psychopathy. We use patient-derived brain cells in 2D and 3D culture systems to mimic the pathological conditions in the diseased brain more accurately. We also center our efforts on discovering new drug targets and biomarkers for the studied diseases. As the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and the ability of drugs to cross the BBB and reach the correct target is critical when designing drugs for neurological diseases, our third aim is to establish a simple model that mimics the physiological architecture and the barrier properties of the BBB. Once created, the ability of novel drugs and biomolecules like extracellular vesicles to penetrate the BBB can be tested. The model can also be used to understand the molecular and transport mechanisms that regulate BBB permeability in physiological and pathological conditions. Gained knowledge and novel discoveries will open in the future new opportunities for therapeutic developments.
Faculty of Health Sciences, A.I. Virtanen Institute for Molecular Sciences
Research groups and research projects
RESEARCH GROUPS - UEF
Albert, Katrina; Niskanen, Jonna; Kälvälä, Sara; Lehtonen, Šárka. 2021. Utilising Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells in Neurodegenerative Disease Research: Focus on Glia International journal of molecular sciences 22 9: 4334. 2021
Studying non-cell-autonomous neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease with induced pluripotent stem cells. Sonninen, Tuuli-Maria; Plotnikova, Lidiia; Laham-Karam, Nihay; Goldsteins, Gundars; Koistinaho, Jari; Lehtonen, Šárka / iPSCs for Modeling Central Nervous System Disorders. 2021. 2021
Tiihonen, Jari; Koskuvi, Marja; Lähteenvuo, Markku; Trontti, Kalevi; Ojansuu, Ilkka; Vaurio, Olli; Cannon, Tyrone D; Lönnqvist, Jouko; Therman, Sebastian; Suvisaari, Jaana; Cheng, Lesley; Tanskanen, Antti; Taipale, Heidi; Lehtonen, Šárka; Koistinaho, Jari. 2021. Molecular signaling pathways underlying schizophrenia Schizophrenia research 232: 33-41. 2021
Wu, Ying-Chieh; Sonninen, Tuuli-Maria; Peltonen, Sanni; Koistinaho, Jari; Lehtonen, Sarka. 2021. Blood-Brain Barrier and Neurodegenerative Diseases-Modeling with iPSC-Derived Brain Cells International journal of molecular sciences 22 14: 7710. 2021
Keuters, Meike Hedwig; Keksa-Goldsteine, Velta; Dhungana, Hiramani; Huuskonen, Mikko T; Pomeshchik, Yuriy; Savchenko, Ekaterina; Korhonen, Paula K; Singh, Yajuvinder; Wojciechowski, Sara; Lehtonen, Šárka; Kanninen, Katja M; Malm, Tarja; Sirviö, Jouni; Muona, Anu; Koistinaho, Milla; Goldsteins, Gundars; Koistinaho, Jari. 2021. An arylthiazyne derivative is a potent inhibitor of lipid peroxidation and ferroptosis providing neuroprotection in vitro and in vivo Scientific reports 11 1: 3518. 2021
Grubman, Alexandra; Vandekolk, Teresa H; Schröder, Jan; Sun, Guizhi; Hatwell-Humble, Jessica; Chan, Jonathan; Oksanen, Minna; Lehtonen, Sarka; Hunt, Cameron; Koistinaho, Jari; Nilsson, Susan; Haynes, John; Pouton, Colin; Polo, Jose. 2020. A CX3CR1 Reporter hESC Line Facilitates Integrative Analysis of In-Vitro-Derived Microglia and Improved Microglia Identity upon Neuron-Glia Co-culture Stem cell reports 14: 1-15. 2020
Oikari, Lotta; Pandit, Rucha; Stewart, Romal; Cuní-López, Carla; Quek, Hazel; Sutharsan, Ratneswary; Rantanen, Laura; Oksanen, Minna; Lehtonen, Sarka; de Boer, Carmela Maria; Polo, Jose; Götz, Jürgen; Koistinaho, Jari; White, Anthony. 2020. Altered Brain Endothelial Cell Phenotype from a Familial Alzheimer Mutation and Its Potential Implications for Amyloid Clearance and Drug Delivery Stem cell reports 14: 1-16. 2020
Rolova, Taisia; Lehtonen, Sárka; Goldsteins, Gundars; Kettunen, Pinja; Koistinaho, Jari. 2020. Metabolic and immune dysfunction of glia in neurodegenerative disorders: focus on iPSC models Stem cells 2021; 39 3: 256-265. 2020
Rolova, Taisia; Wu, Ying-Chieh; Koskuvi, Marja; Voutilainen, Jenni; Sonninen, Tuuli-Maria; Kuusisto, Johanna; Laakso, Markku; Hämäläinen, Riikka H; Koistinaho, Jari; Lehtonen, Sárka. 2020. Generation of a human induced pluripotent stem cell line (UEFi003-A) carrying heterozygous A673T variant in amyloid precursor protein associated with a reduced risk of Alzheimer's disease Stem cell research 48: 101968. 2020
Sonninen, Tuuli-Maria; Goldsteins, Gundars; Laham-Karam, Nihay; Koistinaho, Jari; Lehtonen, Sarka. 2020. Proteostasis Disturbances and Inflammation in Neurodegenerative Diseases Cells 9 10: 2183. 2020