Göttinger Graduiertenschule für Neurowissenschaften, Biophysik und Molekulare Biowissenschaften

Chua, John Jia En, Dr.

Research Group Leader, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen, Germany

  • Since 2014 Research Group Leader, Protein Trafficking in Synaptic Development and Function, Department of Neurobiology, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen
  • 2013 Independent Research Scientist, Department of Neurobiology, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen
  • 2006-2013 Postdoc, Department of Neurobiology, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen
  • 2006 Dr. rer. nat., University of Hamburg

Major Research Interests

Components of the synapse are delivered to, and removed from, synaptic sites by motor-dependent transport along microtubule tracks. In particular, axonal transport by molecular motors delivers proteins and membranes to presynaptic nerve terminals and is essential for synapse formation and maintenance. Interactions between motors and their respective cargoes are regulated at multiple stages during the transport process but details of these regulatory mechanisms remain incompletely understood. Noteworthy, impaired intracellular transport arising from mutations of proteins or perturbations of regulatory pathways involved in axonal transport has been linked to the onset and progression of neurodegenerative disorders.

The major focus of our research is the elucidation of mechanisms involved in the transport and incorporation of proteins into presynaptic sites and how these processes are coordinated. We are also interested in understanding the molecular organization of synaptic macromolecular complexes via the identification and characterization of new synaptic protein interactions.

Homepage Department/Research Group


Selected Recent Publications

  • Boyken J, Grønborg M, Riedel D, Urlaub H, Jahn R, Chua JJ. (2013) Molecular profiling of synaptic vesicle docking sites reveals novel proteins but few differences between glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. Neuron. 78: 285-297.
  • Chua JJ, Schob C, Rehbein M, Gkogkas CG, Richter D, Kindler S. (2012) Synthesis of two distinct SAPAP3 isoforms from a single mRNA is mediated via an upstream open reading frame and alternative translational initiation. Sci. Rep. 2, 484; DOI:10.1038/ srep00484.
  • Chua JJ, Butkevich E, Worseck JM, Kittelmann M, Grønborg M, Behrmann E, Stelzl U, Pavlos NJ, Lalowski M, Eimer S, Wanker EE, Klopfenstein D, Jahn R. (2012) Phosphorylation-regulated axonal dependent transport of syntaxin 1 is mediated by a Kinesin-1 adapter. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 109: 5862- 5867.
  • Pavlos NJ, Grønborg M, Riedel D, Chua JJ, Boyken J, Kloepper TH, Urlaub H, Rizzoli, SO, Jahn R. (2010) Quantitative analysis of synaptic vesicle Rabs uncovers distinct yet overlapping roles of Rab3a and Rab27b in Ca2+-triggered exocytosis. J Neurosci. 30: 13441-13453.
  • Grønborg M, Pavlos NJ, Brunk I, Chua JJ, Münster-Wandowski A, Riedel D, Ahnert-Hilger G, Urlaub H, Jahn R. (2010) Quantitative comparison of glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic vesicles unveils selectivity for few proteins including MAL2, a novel synaptic vesicle protein. J Neurosci. 30: 2- 12.