Dimitri Krainc, MD, PhD

  • Aaron Montgomery Professor and Chairman
  • Interdepartmental Neuroscience
  • Feinberg School of Medicine

The overarching goal of my laboratory has been to define key molecular pathways in the pathogenesis of neurodegeneration. We have focused on pathogenic mechanisms that commonly occur in neurodegenerative disorders such as accumulation and deficient degradation of aggregation-prone proteins and mitochondrial dysfunction. As a general strategy, we are studying rare genetic diseases, in particular those with mutations in genes that play a role in these common pathogenic pathways (e.g. PINK1, Parkin, ATP13A2, Gaucher) with a goal of identifying specific targets for therapeutic development in neurodegeneration. To validate and study these mechanisms in patient-specific human neurons, we are developing new tools to generate purified population of specific neuronal subtypes from reprogrammed patient fibroblasts (iPS).