Tsuneya Ikezu, M.D., Ph.D.

Ikezu1209_3 (3)
Professor of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics and Neurology
Department of Pharmacology

M.D., University of Tokyo Faculty of Medicine
Ph.D., University of Tokyo Graduate School of Medicine

Laboratory of Molecular NeuroTherapeutics:


Dr. Tsuneya Ikezu at the plenary lecture for Alzheimer’s Association’s Inge Grundke-Iqbal Award for Alzheimer’s Research

Research Interests:

Research Interests: The Laboratory of Molecular NeuroTherapeutics mainly focuses on neuroimmune cell-mediated regulations of neuronal function, neurogenesis, neuroinflammation, and neurodegeneration. In particular, we are interested in how the innate immune-related molecules in the central nervous system (CNS) influences the pathology and progression of select neurodegenerative disorders e.g. Alzheimer’s Disease, frontotemporal dementia and autism spectrum disorders.

The current studies include pharmacological means to suppress the propagation of tau protein mouse models. We have created adeno-associated virus-mediated expression of tau protein, which shows spread from neurons to neurons in microglia and exosome synthesis-dependent manner (Asai H, et al Nat Neurosci 2015). AV summary.

A second focus of our lab is the investigation of inflammation-related autism spectrum disorders. Maternal immune activation refers to the systemic infection during the first or second trimester of pregnancy. This is a major risk of autism spectrum disorders. We hypothesize that maternal immune activation develops chronic alternation in microglial homeostatic function, which results in neurodevelopmental abnormality and autism-like phenotypes in animal models.

We use multiple biological reagents and techniques for our studies: tissue culture of neurons, neural stem cells and microglia, custom AAV vectors, stereotaxic intracranial injection, immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, electrophysiology and animal behavior.