Research

Our research group couples sophisticated neuroimaging with novel statistical genetics methodology to study the relationship between genes and brain structure and function. We also leverage collaborations with basic scientists to directly translate human findings into experimental modalities to elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying these relationships. We believe understanding how genetic variation affects brain structure and function in both healthy aging and clinical populations--and then translating this directly to the lab bench--will be critical for developing effective therapeutics against neurodegenerative disease. 


 

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Neurogenetics of Disease

GOALS: 
  • To elucidate contributions to clinical heterogeneity in the face of shared genetic risk.
  • To predict disease risk from polygenic variation.

Neurogenetics of Healthy Cognitive Aging

GOALS:
  • To identify cognitive enhancers of baseline brain structure and function.
  • To identify genes that promote cognitive maintenance in aging.

 

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IN THE NEWS

2015

KLOTHO and healthy brain aging

UCSF Press Release: Brain Region Vulnerable to Aging is Larger in Those with Longevity Gene Variant

LA Times: A fateful gene may make us smarter - for a while, at least

The Guardian: Gene linked to long life also protects against mental decline in old age

CBS News: "Long life" gene might also make some smarter

Fox News Health: Gene variant associated with better aging, cognitive function, study finds



2016

Genetic overlap between Alzheimer's disease and autoimmune disease

Alzforum: New Genetic Method Connects Immune Genes to Alzheimer's

MedicalResearch.com: Study Shows Shared Genetic Risks for Alzheimer's and Autoimmune Disease

Psych Congress Network: Genetic Overlap Between Alzheimer's, Immune-Mediated Diseases