Center Group Leaders

Marc Diamond, M.D.

Marc Diamond, M.D.

Center Director
Professor, Neurology and Neurotherapeutics, Neuroscience
Lab website

Dr. Diamond joined the faculty of UT Southwestern Medical Center in 2014 as the founding director of the Center for Alzheimer’s and Neurodegenerative Diseases. His research focuses on neurodegeneration from the standpoint of proteins that adopt a self-replicating pathological conformation. His group has elucidated the prion model to explain common neurodegenerative disorders. According to this idea, certain pathological proteins replicate distinct pathological structures and cause distinct patterns of neuropathology. The Diamond lab focuses on elucidating fundamental cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration.

Rachel Bailey

Rachel Bailey, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Pediatrics
Associate Director, UT Southwestern Rare Disease Center
Lab website

Dr. Bailey focuses on designing viral-based gene therapies for neurological disorders, optimizing their delivery to the nervous system, and translating these therapies into human testing. Her lab is currently developing gene therapies for rare pediatric disorders and for Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.

Lukasz Joachimiak, Ph.D.

Lukasz Joachimiak, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Biochemistry
Lab website

The Joachimiak lab uses structural and biochemical approaches to study how changes in protein conformation drive self-assembly into larger structures and the role of cofactors in tuning these assembly pathways. Revealing the structural and mechanistic basis for self-associating proteins complexed with other factors will have important implications for understanding the pathology of neurodegenerative diseases. The lab focuses on three main areas: molecular recognition in tuning protein conformation, method development in hybrid structural analysis of protein complexes, and design of molecular recognition.

Lorena Saelices

Lorena Saelices, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Biophysics
Lab website

The Saelices lab employs crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy to study the molecular basis of amyloid deposition. We then use rational and computational design to generate probes that bind these structures and that can be used as inhibitory agents or as detection tools.

Sarah Shahmoradian

Sarah Shahmoradian, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Biophysics
Lab Website

The Shahmoradian lab employs correlative light and electron microscopy and cryo-electron tomography to study in situ cellular components and macromolecular assemblies that are involved in pathological protein aggregation in neurodegenerative disease. We also employ materials science to develop and apply technologies for multi-scale imaging.

Haiyang Yu

Haiyang Yu, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Molecular Biology
Lab Website

Dr. Yu studies how liquid-liquid phase separation contributes to neurodegenerative diseases by using cutting-edge imaging and cell biological technologies. He also develops novel therapeutic strategies by specifically degrading cytoplasmic protein inclusions, by harnessing E3 ubiquitin ligases for targeted degradation.

Affiliated Faculty

Kendra Frederick

Kendra Frederick, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Biophysics

Dr. Frederick uses an integrated structural biology approach encompassing NMR spectroscopy, protein chemistry, and yeast genetics to determine the structures, dynamics, and energetics of protein folding in complex physiological environments.

Milo Lin, Ph.D.

Milo Lin, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Green Center for Systems Biology, Biophysics

Dr. Lin studies the timing of molecular interactions that underlies protein folding and function, sensing networks, and other complex biochemical systems.

Satwik Rajaram

Satwik Rajaram, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Bioinformatics
Lab website

The Rajaram Lab develops machine-learning approaches for image analysis of histopathological tissue to better understand the underlying biology of neurodegenerative disease.

Bhavya Shah, M.D.

Bhavya Shah, M.D

Assistant Professor, Radiology

Dr. Shah's research interests encompass transcranial focused ultrasound (FUS) for treatment of Alzheimer's Disease and brain tumors, nerve stimulation to improve limb function after stroke, and innovations in biomedical devices.

Charles White

Charles White, M.D.

Professor, Pathology

Dr. White is a neuropathologist whose clinical and research interests focus on neurodegenerative brain disorders, employing digital and quantitative microscopy, immunohistochemistry, and tissue microarray technology.