Research

Research Highlights:

  • Pioneered the use of immunotherapy and related imaging probes targeting pathological tau protein as found in AD and related tauopathies.
  • Initiated the use of modified Aβ derivatives as potentially safer immunotherapy for Alzheimer’s disease.  These experiments commenced prior to the encephalitis cases that were observed in the first clinical trial on Aβ immunotherapy, and those adverse reactions support our approach.
  • Demonstrated for the first time that active and passive immunization targeting the prion protein delayed the onset of prion disease in mice.
  • First approach to detect amyloid plaques in living brains.
  • First report showing the effectiveness of chelators as potential therapy for prion diseases.
  • Showed the therapeutic feasibility of β-sheet breaker peptides in vivo.
  • Demonstrated that Aβ can lead to tau pathology at distant sites.

In summary, the research of my laboratory is primarily on age-related degenerative diseases that are characterized by protein conformational changes. It involves studying this alteration, its consequences at the molecular- and system level, the factors that are involved in this process, as well as therapeutic and diagnostic targeting of this pathological pathway.