Pietro De Camilli MD

Eugene Higgins Professor of Cell Biology and Professor of Neurobiology; Director, Yale Program in Cellular Neuroscience and Neurodegeneration and Repair

Research Interests

Synapses; Membrane Traffic; Endocytosis; Clathrin; Dynamin; Phosphoinositides; Lipid Metabolism; Lowe Syndrome; Bar Proteins; Neurodegeneration; Membrane Contact Sites


Research Summary

The cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells is compartmentalized by intracellular membranes that are interconnected by membrane traffic. We study mechanisms underlying membrane dynamics, with emphasis on membrane transport reactions involved in neurotransmission. Our goal is to advance the understanding of nervous system function in health and disease, neurodegenerative diseases in particular. We also exploit the special properties of synapses to learn about general principles of membrane biology. Within this field, the interplay between bilayer lipids and peripheral membrane proteins is a major focus of our work. These interactions help regulate membrane budding, membrane fission and membrane progression along the secretory and endocytic pathways. A new interest of the lab concerns the role of lipid exchange between bilayers at membrane contact sites that do not result in membrane fusion. In our work we use a wide range of techniques, including biochemistry, structural biology, cell-free systems, optical and electron microscopy, and mouse genetics


Selected Publications

  • Wu Y, O'Toole ET, Girard M, Ritter B, Messa M, Liu X, McPherson P, Ferguson SM, De Camilli P. 2014. A dynamin 1-, dynamin 3- and clathrin-independent pathway of synaptic vesicle recycling mediated by bulk endocytosis.Elife. 2014 Jun 24:e01621. doi: 10.7554/eLife.01621.
  • Shen H, Giordano F, Wu Y, Chan J, Zhu C, Milosevic I, Wu X, Yao K, Chen B, Baumgart T, Sieburth D, De Camilli P. 2014. Coupling between endocytosis and sphingosine kinase 1 recruitment. Nat Cell Biol. 2014 Jun 15. doi: 10.1038/ncb2987. [Epub ahead of print]
  • Schauder CM, Wu X, Saheki Y, Narayanaswamy P, Torta F, Wenk MR, De Camilli P*, and Reinisch KM*. 2014. Structure of a lipid-bound Extended-Synaptotagmin indicates a role in lipid transfer. Nature. 510:552-5.
  • Wu X, Chi RJ, Baskin JM, Lucast L, Burd CG, De Camilli P, and Reinisch KM. 2014. Structural insights into assembly and regulation of the plasma membrane phosphatidylinositol 4-kinase complex. Dev. Cell. 28: 19-29.
  • Park R, Shen H, Liu L, Liu X, Ferguson SM, and De Camilli P. 2013. Dynamin triple knockout cells reveal off target effects of a commonly used dynamin inhibitor. J. Cell Sci. 126: 5305-5312.
  • Giordano F, Saheki Y, Idevall-Hagren O, Colombo S, Pirruccello M, Milosevic I, Gracheva E, Bagriantsev SN, Borgese N, and De Camilli P. PI(4,5)P2-dependent and Ca2+-regulated ER-PM interactions mediated by the extended-synaptotagmins. Cell. 153: 1494-1509.
  • Wu M, Wu X, and De Camilli P. 2013. Calcium occilations-coupled conversion of actin travelling waves to standing oscillations. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 4: 1339-1344.
  • Shen H, Pirruccello M and De Camilli P. 2012. SnapShot: Membrane Curvature Sensors and Generators. Cell. 150: 1300-1300.e2
  • Nakatsu F, Baskin JM, Chung J, Tanner LB, Shui G, Lee SY, Pirruccello M, Hao M, Ingolia NT, Wenk MR, and De Camilli P. 2012. PtdIns4P synthesis at the plasma membrane and its impact on PtdIns(4,5)P2 dynamics to control plasma membrane identity. J. Cell Biol. 199: 1003-1016.
  • Idevall-Hagren O, Dickson EJ, Hille B, Toomre DK, and De Camilli P. 2012. Optogenetic control of phosphoinositide metabolism. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 109: 2316-2323.

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