Michal Cagalinec

Department of Pharmacology at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Tartu

What was your main reason for coming to Estonia?

The main reason to come to Estonia was a PostDoc position which was offered to me when attending a conference in Hungary. As the methodology was quite close to the field I was working before and the salary was interesting for me, I decided to come to Estonia initially for two years and now I am here already sixth year…

What kind of research are you doing in Estonia?

Michal Cagalinec

Michal at work

Our working group is focused on mitochondrial pathophysiology in cellular and animal models of neurodegeneration My responsibility in our team is to study mitochondrial dynamics (e.g. fusion, fission, and motility) and morphology (length, fragmentation, ultrastructure) in environment mimicking the neurodegenerative disorders, namely Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s disease. Particularly, I examine the evolution of morphology of the mitochondrial population together with the characteristics of fusion, fission, and motility in living neurons. In addition, using electron microscopy approach I am revealing the altered ultrastructural changes in cellular neurodegeneration models mentioned above. Recently, I began to study the role of Wolframin, protein involved in Wolfram syndrome, a rare hereditary neurological disorder in humans to disclose the role of Wolframin in neurodegeneration and to potentiate it as a possible therapeutic target in the future.

What is the best thing about living/working in Estonia?

 

I think there are several good points, let’s start with the work, of course I am now speaking about my case: a very good working environment at my work, including colleagues, technical equipment and building. Moreover, Estonia offers a lot of grant opportunities, especially focused to EU and what is good, Estonians successfully use these sources a lot. What makes living in Estonia very easy is the electronic/internet support, starting from the free WiFi through electronic banking, well developed electronic services and ending with electronic voting.

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