Trash Talk: Putting a Stop to the Garbage Collection

Trash Talk: Putting a Stop to the Garbage Collection

Collections: Image Award Winners, Frontier Research Program

2021 Award Winner

Nader Morshed, Li-Huei Tsai, Forest White

Koch Institute at MIT, Picower Institute for Learning and Memory

Microglia (magenta) are the resident immune cells of the brain. They collect and dispose of garbage in the central nervous system. With aging, neurons produce toxic proteins that accumulate in large amyloid plaque deposits (yellow).

The White and Tsai Labs are examining how the receptor Siglec-F (cyan) acts to modulate the immune response of microglia to amyloid plaques. Using techniques cultivated in the context of glioblastoma, researchers hope to develop new therapies against Alzheimer’s disease. Their findings could also inform future cancer therapies, as Siglec-F receptors may impact the cells’ ability to fight a growing tumor.

two clusters of fluorescently labeled brain cells


Nader Morshed shares the story behind his award-winning image.

More like this