The role of zinc in synaptic transmission in the central nervous system (2015–2017)
By regulating the strength of synaptic transmission between neurons, zinc exerts dynamic control over many
physiological processes including memory formation, fear conditioning and movement control. Zinc also
controls neuronal cell death pathways. There is currently much controversy about the concentration that zinc
reaches in the synaptic cleft and the length of time it remains elevated. By defining these parameters, this
project will enable us to understand which proteins zinc acts upon and the molecular mechanisms by which it
exerts its synapse-modulating effects. This project will thus provide researchers with a firm understanding of
zinc dynamics that will underpin future research into many physiological processes.