A Gene That Protects Against Brain-Cell Loss


MSI PI Apostolos Georgopoulos (Director, Brain Sciences Center professor, Neuroscience) is a co-author on a recent study that discovered a gene allele that seems to protect a person from age-related loss of brain cells. This discovery could be the basis for development of a treatment that can mimic the allele’s effect. The study was published in March 2018 in the journal eBioMedicine. It can be read on the journal website: Protective Effect of Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) Allele DRB1*13:02 on Age-Related Brain Gray Matter Volume Reduction in Healthy Women.

An article about the research also appears on the Office of the Vice President for Research’s Inquiry blog: A Gene That Preserves Brain Cells.

Researchers at the Brain Sciences Center use methods such as magnetoencephalography (MEG), functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), large-scale computer modeling, neurophysiology, sonification, experimental psychology, single cell recordings, and statistical analysis. MSI provides resources for this research.