Roberto Malinow, M.D., Ph.D.

Shiley Endowed Chair in Alzheimer’s Disease Research; Distinguished Professor of Neurobiology and Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego

Dr. Malinow’s research is directed toward understanding how the brain forms and stores memories. His laboratory examines how neuronal activity controls the strength of communication between neurons, at sites called synapses. Synapses are key sites affected by diseases of cognition. Synaptic plasticity, or the ability of the connection between neurons to vary, is thought to underlie the formation and storage of memories. It is thought that a detailed understanding of synaptic plasticity will identify critical steps that may be the targets of diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. Such an understanding eventually may lead to treatments that prevent the disease.

Funded Research

These projects were made possible from Cure Alzheimer's Fund support.

Selected Publications

These published papers resulted from Cure Alzheimer’s Fund support.

Alfonso, S., Kessels, H. W., Banos, C. C., Chan, T. R., Lin, E. T., Kumaravel, G., Scannevin, R. H., Rhodes, K. J., Huganir, R., Guckian, K. M., Dunah, A. W., & Malinow, R. Synapto-depressive effects of amyloid beta require PICK1, European Journal of Neuroscience, April 8, 2014, Read More

Wu-Zhang, A. X., Schramm, C. L., Nabavi, S., Malinow, R., & Newton, A. C. Cellular Pharmacology of Protein Kinase M zeta (PKM zeta) Contrasts with Its in Vitro Profile IMPLICATIONS FOR PKM zeta AS A MEDIATOR OF MEMORY, Journal of Biological Chemistry, February 29, 2012, Read More

Nabavi, S., Fox, R., Proulx, C. D., Lin, J. Y., Tsien, R. Y., & Malinow, R. Engineering a memory with LTD and LTP, Nature, June 1, 2014, Read More

Kessels, H. W., Nabavi, S., & Malinow, R. Metabotropic NMDA receptor function is required for beta-amyloid-induced synaptic depression, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, February 19, 2012, Read More

Wei, W., Nguyen, L. N., Kessels, H. W., Hagiwara, H., Sisodia, S., & Malinow, R. Amyloid beta from axons and dendrites reduces local spine number and plasticity, Nature Neuroscience, 12/27/2009, Read More

Alfonso, S. I., Callender, J. A., Hooli, B., Antal, C. E., Mullin, K., Sherman, M. A., Lesné, S. E., Leitges, M., Newton, A. C., Tanzi, R. E., & Malinow, R. Gain of Function mutations in protein kinase c alpha (PKC alpha) may promote synaptic defects in Alzheimer’s disease, Science Signaling, May 10, 2016, Read More