Joseph Arboleda-Velasquez, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and Assistant Scientist at Schepens Eye Research Institute of Mass Eye and Ear, is a 2022 recipient of the Edward N. & Della L. Thome Memorial Foundation Awards Program in Alzheimer's Disease Drug Discovery Research. The two-year grant will support Dr. Arboleda’s research involving antibodies that mimic the effect of a rare genetic variation linked to Alzheimer's protection—called APOE3 Christchurch—with the ultimate goal of developing drug and gene therapies for Alzheimer's.
Dr. Arboleda is a cell biologist with particular expertise in small vessel diseases affecting the eye and the brain. He has an emerging international presence for his breakthroughs in the pathogenesis of familial Alzheimer’s disease. This work is inspired by the study of a very large family from Colombia that included more than 6,000 individuals impacted by a mutation in a gene causing early- onset Alzheimer’s disease. By studying individuals from this pedigree who are resistant to Alzheimer’s, Dr. Arboleda hopes to identify new therapeutic targets for this condition.
The Edward N. & Della L. Thome Memorial Foundation was created to advance the health of older adults through the support of direct service projects and medical research. In keeping with the Foundation’s mission, this particular awards program is designed to support the development of novel therapies for patients with Alzheimer’s disease.