Dr. John's Drug Discovery Laboratory in the UCLA Department of Neurology is involved in discovery and development of new therapeutics that modulate memory and cognition in Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. The laboratory performs many aspects of pharmaceutical development from target identification, high throughput screening (HTS), hit-to-lead optimization, pharmacokinetics and lead confirmation efficacy studies to identify preclinical candidates in an academic setting.
The laboratory is also involved in developing technologies for delivery of molecules into the brain. Given the difficulty for most molecules to enter the brain such a technology has the potential to expand the therapeutic landscape of molecules that can be used for treatment of brain disorders and in learning and memory. The laboratory is also developing technologies to isolate neuronal exosomes from plasma, saliva and other fluids to follow therapeutic efficacy.
Lab Web site
• Alam MP, Jagodzinska B, Campagna J, Spilman P, John V. C-O bond Formation in a Microfluidic Reactor: High Yield SNAr Substitution of Heteroaryl Chlorides, Tetrahedron Letters 2016; 57(19):2059-2062.
• Heinzelman P, Bilousova T, Campagna J, John V, Nanoscale Extracellular Vesicle Analysis in Alzheimer’s Disease Diagnosis and Therapy, Int. J. Alzheimer’s Dis, 2016 ; 2016 :8053139.
• Peters-Libeu C, Campagna J, Mitsumori M, Poksay K, Spilman P, Sabogal A, Bredesen DE, John V, sAPPα is a potent endogenous inhibitor of BACE1, J. Alzheimer’s Dis, 2015, 47, 545-555.
• Spilman P, Descamps O, Gorostiza O, Libeu CP, Poksay K, Matalis A, Patent A, Rao R, Bredesen DB, John V, The multi-functional drug Tropisetron binds APP and normalizes cognition in a murine Alzheimer's model, Brain Research 2014, 1551, 25-44.
• Bredesen DE, John V., Next generation therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease, EMBO Mol Med, 2013 5(6):795-8