Exploring the connection between Alzheimer’s disease and stroke

By Shelby Roberts

Alzheimer’s disease is the No. 6 cause of death in the United States, and stroke is the No. 4 cause.

Helena Chui, MD, chair, Department of Neurology, Raymond and Betty McCarron Chair in Neurology, and professor of neurology and gerontology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, recently gave a presentation on Alzheimer’s disease and its relation to stroke on Nov. 6 as the sixth lecture in an ongoing Stroke Seminar Series at the Rio Hando Community Center in Downey, Calif. The event was hosted by the Roxanna Todd Hodges Stroke Foundation. Read More »

December 24th, 2013|Announcements|

Top Trojan scientists converge at Neuroscience 2013

By Robert Perkins

Several key faculty members from USC presented the latest pioneering research in neuroscience at the Society for Neuroscience’s annual meeting in San Diego in November.
More than 30,000 scientists and collaborators from 80 countries gathered for presentations by luminaries in the field, including USC’s Antonio Damasio, MD, PhD, Berislav Zlokovic, MD, PhD, and Dan Campbell, PhD. Read More »

December 23rd, 2013|Announcements|


Students, faculty and staff on the Health Sciences Campus were treated to German music and a feast of bratwurst, sauerkraut, German potato salad, beer and pretzels to celebrate the coming of October — and the USC Good Neighbors Campaign. Read More »

December 23rd, 2013|Announcements|

OT symposium convenes scholars of sensory integration research

By Mike McNulty

National experts on the sensory issues tied to autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders exchanged their respective research at the 24th USC Occupational Science Symposium, which brought together dozens of leaders from across the country to assess the field and prioritize future research directions.

Hosted by the USC Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy and its Sensory Integration, Engagement and Family Program, more than 350 researchers, clinicians and educators attended the Nov. 7 event, titled “Sensory Integration at the Crossroads: Diverse Perspectives in Occupational Therapy Research.” Read More »

December 23rd, 2013|Announcements|

USC researchers apply brainpower to understanding neural stem cell differentiation

By Cristy Lytal

How do humans and other mammals get so brainy? USC researcher Wange Lu, PhD, and his colleagues shed new light on this question in a paper published in Cell Reports on Oct. 24.

The researchers donned their thinking caps to explain how neural stem and progenitor cells differentiate into neurons and related cells called glia. Neurons transmit information through electrical and chemical signals; glia surround, support and protect neurons in the brain and throughout the nervous system. Glia do everything from holding neurons in place to supplying them with nutrients and oxygen, to protecting them from pathogens.

By studying early mouse embryo neural stem cells in a petri dish, Lu and his colleagues discovered that a protein called SMEK1 promotes the differentiation of neural stem and progenitor cells. At the same time, SMEK1 keeps these cells in check by suppressing their uncontrolled proliferation. Read More »

December 23rd, 2013|Announcements|