Contributed by: His Daughters, Extended Family, and Friends
Established in 2022.
Dr. Adriano Aguzzi
Adriano Aguzzi has devoted his professional life to deciphering the role of the immune system in prion diseases. The importance of his work is acknowledged by almost 72’000 citations (H-index: 137). Aguzzi’s findings of pervasive colonization of the immune system by prions convinced governments worldwide to undertake efforts to limit human exposure to prions derived from farm animals. His finding of the B-cell requirement for prion spread was the basis of the UK’s decision to introduce universal leukodepletion of blood donation – a measure that is likely to have saved thousands of human lives. His work demonstrated that chronic inflammation controls the organ tropism of prion diseases, thereby clarifying how scrapie prions propagate horizontally within sheep flocks. The realization that prion excretion results from coincident inflammation and prion infection is paving the way to the eradication of prion diseases from ruminants. His discoveries were shown to be valid for all common neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s (AD) and Parkinson’s.
As a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Zurich under the guidance of Prof. Adriano Aguzzi, Davide is a dedicated researcher specializing in prion disease. His work is centered on deciphering the intricate mechanisms of these conditions, with a strong emphasis on identifying associated biomarkers and developing treatments. He possesses a deep expertise in cutting-edge techniques such as single cell RNA sequencing, spatial transcriptomics, and advanced genetic screening.
The identification of PrPSc interaction partners and the characterization of their role in prion infection and/or propagation
Instructor, Department of Biochemistry, Boston University School of Medicine
Grant Year: 2023