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Scientific Advisors & Collaborators

Andrew Feigin, M.D.

Professor, Department of Neurology at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, Associate Chair for NYU Network and Clinical Research, Department of Neurology, Executive Director, The Marlene and Paolo Fresco Institute for Parkinson's and Movement Disorders.

Dr. Andrew Feigin has been involved in Huntington’s disease (HD) clinical research for more than 20 years. He participated in the Venezuela HD project for 10 years beginning in 1993, and he has been a site principal investigator on more than 30 National Institute of Health and industry-sponsored clinical trials of new treatments for HD and Parkinson’s disease (PD). In addition, Dr. Feigin has been a principal investigator (PI) on several multicenter clinical trials for HD and PD. He has also served in several leadership roles for the Huntington Study Group and currently serves as chair. In addition to his clinical research activities, Dr. Feigin maintains a busy clinical practice caring for patients with HD, PD, and other movement disorders.

Senda Ajroud-Driss, M.D.

Associate Professor of Neurology, Director of the Lois Insolia ALS Clinic / Les Turner ALS Center, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL.

Dr. Senda Ajroud-Driss, MD is a neuromuscular medicine specialist in Chicago, IL. Dr. Ajroud-Driss completed her Medical Degree at University of Tunis, Tunisia (1996) and postgraduate residency at University of Illinois Hospital and Health System, followed by a Fellowship at Northwestern University, McGaw Medical Center (Northwestern Memorial Hospital), (2005). She currently practices at Regenstein Center for Neurological Care and is affiliated with Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Dr. Ajroud-Driss has 25 years of experience with specialties in Neuromuscular Disorders: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Muscular Dystropy, Peripheral Neuropathy.

Certifications

  • Board Certification: Neurology, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.
  • Board Certification: Neuromuscular Medicine, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

Mark Mattson, Ph.D.

Retired Chief, Laboratory of Neurosciences, National Institute on Aging (NIA).

After receiving his Ph.D. degree from the University of Iowa, Dr. Mattson completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Developmental Neuroscience at Colorado State University. He then joined the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine where he advanced to Full Professor. In 2000, Dr. Mattson took the position of Chief of the Laboratory of Neurosciences at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore. He is also a Professor in the Department of Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine where he is the director of a course on the Neurobiology of Aging. Dr. Mattson leads a multi-faceted research team that applies cutting-edge technologies in research aimed at understanding molecular and cellular mechanisms of brain aging and the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases, and stroke. His work has elucidated how the brain responds adaptively to challenges such as fasting and exercise, and he has used that information to develop novel interventions to promote optimal brain function throughout life. He has published more than 500 original research articles and numerous review articles, and has edited 10 books in the areas of signal transduction, cellular stress responses, neurodegenerative disorders and mechanisms of aging. Dr. Mattson has been the most highly cited neuroscientist in the world during the past 20 years with an ‘h’ index of over 160. He has received many awards including the Metropolitan Life Foundation Medical Research Award, the Alzheimer’s Association Zenith Award, the Santiago Grisolia Chair Prize and the Tovi Comet-Walerstein Science Award. He was elected an AAAS Fellow in 2011. He is Editor-in-Chief of Ageing Research Reviews and NeuroMolecular Medicine, and has been/is a Managing or Associate Editor of Nature Communications, the Journal of Neuroscience, Trends in Neurosciences, the Journal of Neurochemistry and the Neurobiology of Aging.

Martin Brand B. Sc., M.A., Ph.D., F. Med. Sci.

Bucks Institute on Aging, CA.

Dr. Martin Brand was trained in Biochemistry in the UK at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (B.Sc.) and the University of Bristol (Ph.D.), followed by a postdoctoral position at Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, MD) with Professor Albert Lehninger. He was a faculty member of the Biochemistry Department at the University of Cambridge (UK) and a Fellow of Girton College, Cambridge, then a Group Leader at the Medical Research Council in Cambridge. He moved his laboratory to the Buck Institute for Research on Aging in Novato, CA, in 2008.

Dr. Brand’s scientific research focuses on cellular energy transformations, particularly the balance between allocation of energy for growth, repair and fat storage on the one hand, and inefficiencies to prevent damaging free radical production and disease on the other. He has made major contributions to understanding the mechanisms of energy transformation, and in understanding the mechanisms of energetic inefficiency and free radical production, and their roles in evolution, physiology, and the diseases of aging.

Dr. Brand has published over 330 scientific papers, which have been cited more than 30,000 times by other scientists. His research has been recognized by awards of the Keilin Medal of the Biochemical Society and a senior scholarship from the Ellison Medical Foundation, and by his election as a fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (UK). He serves on the editorial board of several scientific journals (Aging Cell, Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, Cell Metabolism, Physiological and Biochemical Zoology) and the scientific advisory boards of Mitochon Pharmaceuticals and Ogenx Therapeutics.

Current Research Projects
Dr. Brand currently works on regulation of cellular energy metabolism and the mitochondrial production of free radicals (reactive oxygen species; ROS). To investigate the regulation of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation within cells, his laboratory has established improved plate-based assays of oxygen consumption rate and extracellular acidification rate, and fully quantitative fluorescence microscopy measurements of plasma membrane and mitochondrial membrane potential. They have used these technologies to understand mitochondrial function in cells and tissues and the relationships between rate of oxidative phosphorylation, coupling efficiency and radical production in aging and in a range of age-related pathologies. Dr. Brand’s laboratory has established the specific sites and regulation of free radical generation in the electron transport chain in mitochondria and cells using novel endogenous reporters, and screened chemical libraries to discover novel suppressors of ROS formation that do not inhibit energy metabolism; these compounds hold great promise as therapeutics against previously unexplored targets to slow the onset of aging and its diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, stroke, sarcopenia, osteoporosis and dementia.

Peter LeWitt, M.D.

Director, Movement Disorders Fellowship Program, Department of Neurology, Department of Neurology, Wayne State University School and practicing physician at Henry Ford Hospitals Michigan.

Dr. Peter LeWitt directs the Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Program at Henry Ford Hospital in West Bloomfield, Michigan and is professor of neurology at Wayne State University School of Medicine since 1986. A graduate of Brown University School of Medicine (and also awarded a M.Med.Sc. in Biochemical Pharmacology), his neurology residency training was at Stanford University School of Medicine. He completed fellowship training in experimental therapeutics at the National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders. His neurological subspecialty has been in movement disorders. He has been a founding member of the Parkinson Study Group, an officer of the Movement Disorder Society, and is currently president of the Tremor Research Group. Dr. LeWitt has extensive experience in clinical trials for Parkinson’s disease and other neurological disorders, and his research interests have also included animal models and biomarkers of neurological disease, pharmacokinetic analysis, and gene therapy for Parkinson’s disease. Speciality: Parkinson's disease, dystonia and tremor.

Awards, Honors and Publications
Michigan Parkinson Foundation (President)
International Essential Tremor Foundation (Vice-President)
Inclusion in The Best Doctors in America (Naifeh S, Smith G, eds), Aiken (South Carolina), Woodward/White, 1994-present

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