While there is a growing body of evidence to indicate that the blood-brain barrier (BBB) is compromised in Alzheimer's disease (AD), there has been little data to support a link between known risk factors for AD and the BBB. My research will attempt to show that the product of the ε4 allele of the APOE gene, a known risk factor for developing AD, somehow fails to maintain the integrity of the BBB, compared to the ε3 allele, and that this BBB failure leads to the chain of events resulting in AD.
John E. Donahue received his M.D. from Tufts University in 1992. He trained in neurology at Tufts-New England Medical Center and in neuropathology at Rhode Island Hospital. After spending four years at the New Jersey Neuroscience Institute as Director of Neuropathology, he returned to RIH/Brown Medical School in 2003 to practice clinical neuropathology and pursue academic research in neurodegenerative diseases (e.g. Alzheimer's disease) and the blood-brain barrier. Being both a neurologist and neuropathologist enables him to bring a clinical perspective to neuropathology material and an underlying pathologic understanding to clinical material. Translational research in neurodegenerative diseases is ideally-suited for a neurologist-neuropathologist like him. This is a very rare combination in the 21st century; most newly-trained neuropathologists are trained in general anatomic and surgical pathology, not neurology.
JOHN E. DONAHUE, M.D.
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