Eliezer Masliah, MD, Dept. of Neuroscience, UCSD
Eliezer Masliah received his Medical Doctor Degree from the National Autonomous University of Mexico in 1982, after completing a post-graduate residency training in Pathology at the National Institutes of Health in Mexico City in 1986, Dr. Masliah completed a fellowship in Neuropathology and neurodegenerative disorders at the University of California, San Diego in 1989. Dr. Masliah was recruited both by the Departments of Neurosciences and Pathology at the University of California, San Diego where he is currently Tenured Professor, Director of the Laboratory of Experimental Neuropathology and Director of the Autopsy Service at the UCSD-Medical Center. Dr. Masliah has published over 500 original research articles, 50 books chapters and over 10 patents. The laboratory of Dr. Masliah is dedicated at investigating the molecular mechanisms of synaptic degeneration and developing new therapies for neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, Multiple System Atrophy, HIV dementia and Huntington’s Disease. Dr. Masliah laboratory has developed transgenic mouse models of these neurodegenerative disorders and is actively involved in better understanding the mechanisms of synaptic damage and at developing novel treatments for these devastating disorders including gene therapy, immunotherapy and small molecule approaches to reduce protein misfolding and aggregation.
Kalpana Merchant, PhD, Consultant
Dr. Merchant received her doctorate in neuropharmacology from the University of Utah in 1989. Following a postdoctoral research fellowship at the University of Washington, she was appointed Assistant Professor of psychiatry at the University of Washington. In 1993, she began a career as Senior Research Advisor and Fellow at Pharmacia Corp., where she contributed to CNS drug discovery research. She was recruited from Pharmacia to Eli Lilly and Company in 2003. As Lilly’s Chief Scientific Officer of Translational Science, Dr. Merchant and her laboratory focused on new target discovery and validation approaches for Parkinson’s disease and neuropsychiatric disorders. Under her leadership, the Translational Science department applied multidisciplinary approaches involving human genetics, functional genomics, molecular pathology and imaging as well as mass spectrometry-based bioanalytics to gain scientific insights into disease state biology in individual patient populations. Dr. Merchant is an expert in translational approaches for the discovery and development of drugs for neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders. She is engaged in the wider scientific community via her service on NIH Study Sections, NIH or IOM workshops and Advisory Panels as well as membership in several national and international professional societies.