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NEUROPATHOLOGY CORE

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The Neuropathology Core serves as a repository of blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and autopsy tissues from participants evaluated and followed in the Clinical Core. The Pathology Core provides standardized assessment of histological lesions and neuropathological diagnoses focusing on normal aging, cerebrovascular disease, and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. Tissues are prepared, stored and allocated for research projects at USC, as well as other Alzheimer Disease Centers and AD investigators. Interested investigators should contact Carol Miller, MD (email: carolmil@usc.edu)

Leadership team

Carol Miller, MD., Leader

Dr. Miller has longstanding expertise in the cell and molecular biology of neurodegenerative diseases. Using human AD postmortem tissues, she identifies gene expression related to the selective vulnerability of neurons and early changes in synaptic terminals. Characterization of Alzheimer pathology in the human eye may lead to improved clinical diagnosis. By combining the specificity of immunohistochemical staining with unprecedented tissue transparency achieved through the CLARITY method, Miller and K Clark (Institute of Neuroimaging and Informatics) hope to advance, at finer anatomical resolution, knowledge of neuronal vulnerability and loss of connectivity in Alzheimer’s disease.

Berislav Zlokovic, PhD., Co-Leader

Dr. Zlokovic has a long standing interest in understanding the role of cerebral blood vessels and blood-brain barrier in the pathogenesis and treatment of neurological disorders including Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and stroke. Using experimental models of Alzheimer’s disease and studying human brain, his research team has shown that disruption of cellular cross-talk within the neurovascular unit can initiate neuronal dysfunction and injury, degeneration and loss, as well as accumulation Aβ and tau pathology. His lab has been working on developing new CSF biomarkers of cell and system specific injury within the neurovascular unit.