Who We Are

Thomas Montine

Thomas Montine | Principal Investigator  

Stanford Alzheimer's Disease Research Center

Stanford Udall Center

Board Certification: Neuropathology, American Board of Pathology (1997)

Board Certification: Anatomic Pathology, American Board of Pathology (1997)

Fellowship: Vanderbilt University Medical Center (1996), TN

Residency: Duke University Hospital (1994, 1995), NC

Internship: Duke University Medical Center (1992), NC

Medical Education: McGill University Faculty of Medicine (1991), Canada

Dr. Montine received his education at Columbia University (BA in Chemistry), the University of Rochester (PhD in Pharmacology), and McGill University (MD and CM). His postgraduate medical training was at Duke University, and he was junior faculty at Vanderbilt University where he was awarded the Thorne Professorship in Pathology. In 2002, Dr. Montine was appointed as the Alvord Endowed Professor in Neuropathology and Director of the Division of Neuropathology at the University of Washington. He was Director of the University of Washington Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, one of the original 10 Centers in the US, and passed that responsibility to able colleagues. In 2010, Dr. Montine was appointed Chair of the Department of Pathology at the University of Washington. In 2016, Dr. Montine was appointed Chair of the Department of Pathology at Stanford University where he is the Stanford Medicine Endowed Professor in Pathology. Dr. Montine also serves as the Neuropathology and Biospecimens Core leader of the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Center.

Dr. Montine is the founding Director of the Pacific Udall Center, one of 9 NINDS-funded Morris K. Udall Centers of Excellence for Parkinson’s Disease Research. Our center performs basic, translational, and clinical research focused on cognitive impairment in Parkinson’s disease. The Pacific Udall Center emphasizes a vision for precision health that comprises functional genomics, development of surveillance tools for pre-clinical detection, and discovery of molecularly tailored therapies.

Dr. Montine is among the top recipients of NIH funding for all Department of Pathology faculty in the United States. He was the 2015 President of the American Association of Neuropathologists, and led or co-led recent NIH initiatives to revise diagnostic guidelines for Alzheimer’s disease (NIA), develop research priorities for the National Alzheimer’s Plan (NINDS and NIA), and develop research priorities for Parkinson’s Disease (NINDS).

Adam M. Wawro

Adam M. Wawro | Postdoctoral Fellow   ORCID

PhD in Chemistry from Tohoku University, Japan

MScEng in Chemical Technology from Warsaw University of Technology, Poland

Adam did his PhD working on well-defined polyethylene glycol derivatives for antibody–drug conjugates and protein stabilization. In the Montine Lab Adam investigates metabolism of neurotransmitter analogues in brain and develops quantitative assays of Alzheimer’s Disease biomarkers in human cerebrospinal fluid. He is also responsible for LC-MS analyses for other ongoing projects in the lab.

Adam M. Wawro -
                    Synaptosome Workflow Scheme
Preparation of synaptosomes from whole mouse brain
Chandresh Gajera

Chandresh Gajera | Staff Scientist  

PhD in Molecular Biology from Max-Delbruck Center for Molecular Medicine and Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany

MTech in Biological Science and Bio Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India

BPharm from L. M. College of Pharmacy, Gujarat University, India

Chandresh works on neural stem cell biology and neurodegenerative disease modelling using in vivo and cell based quantitative bioassays. He also uses single synaptosome mass cytometry to search for early biomarkers to detect Alzheimer's and Parkinson’s disease.

Dunja Mrdjen

Dunja Mrdjen | Postdoctoral Fellow  

PhD in Immunology from University of Zurich, Switzerland

MSc in Clinical Science & Immunology, University of Cape Town, South Africa

BSc (Hons) in Medical Biochemistry, University of Cape Town, South Africa

BSc in Molecular & Cell Biology, University of Cape Town, South Africa

Dunja is working together with the Bendall Lab to build predictive models for Alzheimer’s disease progression from genetically and pathologically highly characterized cohorts of human brain autopsy samples using Multiplexed Ion Beam Imaging (MIBI) and by implementing deep-learning for image analysis of cellular and sub-cellular targets in the brain. Integrating multi-platform and cross-species antibody panels, Dunja aims to leverage MIBI and CyTOF mass cytometry across species to unravel microglial granularity in neurodegenerative diseases. Read some of Dunja’s work in Immunity here.

Multiplexed Ion Beam Imaging (MIBI) of human hippocampus
Edward J. Fox

Edward J. Fox | Staff Scientist  

PhD in Medicine from University College Dublin, Ireland

BSc in Pharmacology from University College Dublin, Ireland

Eddie is working on the role of the immune system in Parkinson’s disease progression. Specifically, Eddie aims to determine if Parkinson’s disease is associated with T-cell recognition of specific epitopes with the hope to explain the association of Parkinson's disease with specific human leukocyte antigen complex alleles and whether immune modulation could help temper these maladaptive factors, enabling beneficial immune responses in the context of neurodegenerative diseases. Eddie is also investigating the epigenetic patterns that underlie healthy brain aging. Genome-wide studies have begun to characterize epigenetic changes in neurodegenerative diseases and have led to an emerging realization that the maintenance of a healthy brain relies in part on epigenetic mechanisms. His goal is to examine the epigenetic underpinnings of the resistance to cognitive decline in subsets of elderly patients.

Katherine L. Lucot

Katherine (Katie) L. Lucot | Postdoctoral Fellow  

PhD in Genetics from University of California, Davis, USA

MS in Animal Breeding and Genetics from University of Nebraska, Lincoln, USA

BS in Pre-Veterinary Science from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, USA

Katie is interested in translational genomics using animals as models for human diseases. In collaboration with the James Lab, she researches the genetic differences underlying the pathology of Parkinson’s disease and aims to improve early detection of using PET imaging. In collaboration with the Gomez-Ospina Lab, Katie is working on making a new mouse model for Gaucher’s disease and Parkinson’s disease using the CRISPR Cas9 system. This model will allow us to investigate stem cell therapy as a form of treatment for both diseases.

Ryan Corces

Ryan Corces | Postdoctoral Fellow  

PhD in Cancer Biology from Stanford University, CA, USA

BASc in Molecular Biology from Princeton University, NJ, USA

Ryan works together with the Chang Lab to investigate how the epigenome is altered in age-related diseases. Using genome-wide epigenomic assays, Ryan studies primary human brain tissue from patients with Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Read some of Ryan’s work in Science here.

Ryan Corces -
                    Investigating the epigenetic landscape of neurodegenerative diseases
Investigating the epigenomic landscape of neurodegenerative diseases
Rosemary Fernandez

Rosemary Fernandez | Lab Manager  

PhD in Applied Chemistry from University of Jabalpur, India

MS in Organic Chemistry from University of Jabalpur, India

Rosemary is studying the heterogeneity in immunological parameters in peripheral mononucleated cells from multiple cohorts of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease patients using high-dimensional mass cytometry and functional assays for single cell biomarker discovery and immune signature of the disease.

Anusha Bharadwaj

Anusha Bharadwaj | Life Science Research Professional II  

MS in Molecular and Cell Biology from The University of Texas at Dallas

MSc in Biotechnology from Avinashilingam University, Coimbatore, India

BSc in Chemistry, Zoology and Biotechnology from Bangalore University, Bangalore, India

Anusha is collaborates on multiple projects in the lab including helping to develop antibody panels to identify biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease by multiplexed ion beam imaging (MIBI) and CyTOF mass cytometry, as well as immuno-assays for protein biomarker discovery on microparticles like exosome from cerebrospinal fluid. Anusha also collaborates with the Neuropathology and Biospecimens Core at the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC) on a CSF biomarker discovery project and she contributes to the Parkinson’s Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI).

Mai Dao

Mai Dao | Life Science Research Professional II  

Mai is conducting proteinopathy studies through the use of immunohistochemistry techniques. She is interested in the protein changes in the brain in patients who have been screened for Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, and how these changes correlate to cognitive deficits.

Divya Channappa

Divya Channappa | Stanford ADRC Project Coordinator  

MS in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology from University of Southern California, Los Angeles, USA

BS in Industrial Biotechnology, Anna University, India

Divya Channappa worked as a research associate for 6 years in the Department of Molecular Imaging and Immunology, Beckman Research Institute, Duarte, CA. She has extensive experience in antibody engineering and yeast surface display for protein engineering. At Stanford, she has been involved in processing samples, maintaining biospecimen databases and coordinating ADRC Neuropathology and Biospecimens Core over the past 3 years. She helps the core maintain an archive of research tissues from brain autopsies. She also helps ADRC collaborators with research involving genomic DNA by using molecular biology techniques.

Robert Kazimierz Lesniak

Robert Kazimierz Lesniak | Postdoctoral Fellow  

Chemistry, Engineering & Medicine for Human Health

DPhil Chemical Biology from Oxford University, Oxford, UK

MSci Chemistry, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK

Robert joined the Medicinal Chemistry Knowledge Center (MCKC) at Stanford ChEM-H in 2018 as a postdoctoral research scholar. Prior to coming to Stanford, he worked with Professor Chris Schofield at the University of Oxford, as a postdoctoral research associate, designing novel antibiotics for the European gram-negative antibacterial engine (ENABLE) and UK Medical Research Council (MRC). Dr Leśniak also completed his DPhil under the guidance of Professor Schofield as a BHF-CRE studentship recipient, developing small molecules targeting Fe(II), 2-oxoglutarate dependent oxygenase enzymes involved in carnitine biosynthesis and hypoxic response as a means to treat cardiovascular disease. Robert completed his undergraduate at the University of Bristol, and worked at GlaxoSmithKline, North Carolina, developing inhibitors of bromodomains and histone acetyl-transferases. He is currently working with the Montine lab in the design of neurotransmitter prodrugs.

Anna Lena Lang

Anna Lena Lang | Visiting Student Researcher  

Medical Student at Charité University Medicine Berlin, Germany

Lena is doing a visiting research year in our lab, pursuing a Medical Doctorate Thesis. Together with Eddie she is working on the epigenetic mechanisms of healthy brain aging. Back in Berlin she will continue her work in the research team of Prof. Dr. David Capper in the Neuropathology Lab of Charité.

Syed Bukhari

Syed Bukhari | Stanford Research Brain Autopsy Program Coordinator  

Masters in Biology from Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

Bachelors in Molecular Cell Biology from University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, CA

Syed is the Primary Brain Dissectionist and Coordinator for all Research Brains that arrive to Stanford School of Medicine. He is responsible for working with the Neuropathologist in completing and analyzing the data obtained from Rapid Brain Autopsies. His background is in functional neuroanatomy and neuroscience. He received his training in Brain Dissection and Neuroanatomy from Harvard Medical School where he acted as the Senior Human Brain Dissectionist at the Harvard Brain Tissue Resource Center.
Currently, Syed is involved in several research projects including the Parkinson’s Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI), The 90+ Study, and the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC). The PPMI study is using advanced imaging and biological sampling to identify biomarkers of Parkinson’s disease progression. The 90+ study is a longitudinal research project examining successful aging and dementia in individuals 90 years and older. The Stanford ADRC is part of a nationwide network of Alzheimer’s Disease Centers that works to translate research advancements into improved diagnosis and care for people with Alzheimer’s and related brain disorders. Syed is well-versed in utilizing the National Institute on Aging-Alzheimer’s Association guidelines for the neuropathologic assessment of Alzheimer’s Disease. Along with the Neuropathologist, Syed presents data in Clinicopathological Conferences, wherein pathology data obtained from tissue is compared to clinical data and assessed for any degree of concordance. Syed’s interests include Neuroanatomy and Anatomic Pathology/Neuropathology.

Thanaphong (Joe) Phongpreecha

Thanaphong (Joe) Phongpreecha | Postdoctoral Fellow

PhD in Chemical Engineering from Michigan State University, USA

BEng in Chemical Engineering from Thammasat University, Thailand

Joe did his PhD study on computational materials science and chemical engineering for sustainable energy applications. In the Montine lab, Joe works in collaboration with the Aghaeepour lab on the analysis of high-dimensional mass cytometry data to draw useful insights by means of statistics, network analysis, and machine model interpretation. Together with Rosemary, their current interest is identifying biomarkers and immune signature of patients with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. You can find some of Joe's previous works here.