Mechanisms of Aging and Demential Training Program (M.A.D.)

The multidisciplinary Mechanisms of Aging and Dementia (M.A.D.) Training Program provides a select group of postdoctoral and predoctoral trainees a comprehensive research and training opportunity in fundamental and clinical aspects of aging and dementia, especially Alzheimer’s Disease, that is not available through the individual departmental or graduate programs. Program courses and research activities provide a broad overview of the different areas of aging and dementia research, including molecular/cell biology, signaling, systems, neuropsychology and behavioral neuroscience and brain imaging. In particular, the proposed program brings molecular/cellular approaches together with cognitive neurological and clinical approaches, which are a major strength in the Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease Center at the Medical School.

An important feature of the Training Program is that it brings together researchers in fundamental and clinical neuroscience, providing a highly productive, interdisciplinary research environment for trainees in aging and dementia. In addition to providing research training, the program will help trainees develop skills in written and oral communication, grant writing/grantsmanship, networking and career development. Instilling a clear awareness of ethical issues facing neuroscientists and responsible conduct in science is also a major training goal.

The M.A.D. Training Program supports 4 predoctoral and 4 postdoctoral trainees per year. Trainees are selected by a Steering Committee from among nominations solicited from preceptors. Selection is based on outstanding evaluations from research rotation and thesis advisors, strong performance in coursework, strong letters of support from faculty, and a detailed research plan consistent with the training program objectives.


Disterhoft, John, PhD

Associate Director:

Weintraub, Sandra, PhD

Steering Committee:

Gottfried, Jay, MD, PhD
Kessler, John, MD

Klein, William, PhD

Paller, Ken, PhD
Routtenberg, Aryeh, PhD
Vassar, Robert, PhD
Weintraub, Sandra, PhD

View list of all Faculty Profiles associated this grant


Bevan, Mark, PhD Kraus, Nina, PhD Rogalski, Emily, PhD
Bigio, Eileen, MD Li, Liming, PhD Routtenberg, Aryeh, PhD
Mesulam, Marek-Marsel, MD Shepherd, Gordon, MD, PhD
Chan, C. Savio, PhD Miller, Richard, PhD Siddique, Teepu, MD
Contractor, Anis, PhD Morimoto, Richard, PhD Surmeier, Jr., D. James, PhD
Csernansky, John, MD Nicholson, Daniel, PhD Vassar, Robert, PhD
Disterhoft, John, PhD Opal, Puneet, MD, PhD Voss, Joel, PhD
Dombeck, Daniel, PhD Ozdinler, Pembe Hande, PhD Weintraub, Sandra, PhD
Ferreira, Adriana, MD, PhD Paller, Ken, PhD Wong, Patrick, PhD
Geula, Changiz, PhD Penzes, Peter, PhD Wright, Beverly, PhD
Gottfried, Jay, MD, PhD Reber, Paul, PhD Zee, Phyllis, MD, PhD
Kessler, John, MD Rice, Sarah, PhD Wang, Lei, PhD
Klein, William, PhD Krainc, Dimitri, MD, PhD


Pre Doctoral Trainees:

Warren McGee (Advisor: Wu, Jane, MD, PhD)
Daniel Ohm (Advisor: Rogalski, Emily, PhD)
Anil Wadhwani (Advisor: Kessler, Jack, MD)
Stephanie Valtierra (Advisor: Li, Liming, PhD)

Pre Doctoral Affiliate Trainees:

Xiaojun Bao (Advisor: Gottfried, Jay, MD, PhD)
Xiao-Wen Yu (Advisor: Disterhoft, John, PhD)

Post Doctoral Trainees:

Donna Bridge, PhD (Advisor: Voss, Joel, PhD)
Daniel Curlik, PhD (Advisor: Disterhoft, John, PhD)
Tristan Hedrick, PhD (Advisor: Swanson, Geoff, PhD)
Jason Pitt, PhD (Advisor: Chan, Savio, PhD)

For more information, contact: Sally McIver,