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Petra Wäster


The aim of our research is to map and understand the function of lysosomes in order to treat and cure diseases where the function of lysosome is affected, e.g. cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.

The lysosome as a therapeutic target?

Lysosomes are key components of many cellular processes, which make them attractive targets for treatment strategies and the design of novel therapeutic compounds.

Future inventions to manipulate lysosomal function might be of great benefit for diseases such as cancer and neurodegenerative disorders.

The aim of our research is to elucidate how lysosomal functions are regulated in normal cells and how they are affected in different pathological processes.

In particular, the aim of our ongoing projects is to:

  • Investigate the lysosomal stability and how its contents are released.
  • Elucidate the role of lysosomes in pathological processes such as cancer and compare with corresponding normal cells.
  • Clarify the impact of release of lysosomal constituents from cancer cells on cell function, intercellular communication and invasion through extracellular matrix degradation.
  • Obtain a deeper understanding of the UV-induced effects on the lysosome in initiation and progression of melanoma.
  • Develop a drug delivery system to target the lysosomes.



Ida Eriksson, Linda Vainikka, Petra Wäster, Karin Öllinger (2023) Lysosomal Function and Intracellular Position Determine the Malignant Phenotype in Melanoma Journal of Investigative Dermatology, Vol. 143, p. 1769-+ Continue to DOI


Ida Eriksson, Petra Wäster, Karin Öllinger (2020) Restoration of lysosomal function after damage is accompanied by recycling of lysosomal membrane proteins Cell Death and Disease, Vol. 11, Article 370 Continue to DOI
Petra Wäster, Ida Eriksson, Linda Vainikka, Karin Öllinger (2020) Extracellular vesicles released by melanocytes after UVA irradiation promote intercellular signaling via miR21 Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research, Vol. 33, p. 542-555 Continue to DOI