Ghazaleh Sadri-Vakili, M.S., Ph.D.

Associate Investigator
Neurology, Mass General Research Institute
Associate Professor of Neurology
Harvard Medical School
PhD Boston University 2003
als biomarkers; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; epigenetics; huntington disease; substance use disorder; therapeutics; x-linked dystonia parkinsonism

The NeuroEpigenetics laboratory at MIND, under the direction of Ghazaleh Sadri-Vakili studies the molecular mechanisms that underlie alterations in gene expression in disorders of the nervous system using the most current molecular biology tools.

Currently, their efforts are focused on Huntington’s disease (HD), Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), as well as addiction.

So far, they have identified a number of epigenetic alterations, or those that don’t involve changes in the DNA sequence, that lead to changes in gene expression in animal and cellular models of HD and are targeting histone modifying enzymes such as histone deacetylases as a novel approach for the treatment of HD.

In addition, the laboratory is currently assessing the neuroprotective effects of a novel class of compounds known as MicroNeurotrophins for the treatment of ALS and HD. The lab is also interested in investigating the molecular mechanisms that underlie drug abuse as part of several collaborations with colleagues from the University of Pennsylvania and Florida State University.

Their research is aimed at identifying the epigenetic marks and the molecular mechanisms that underlie relapse. The most recent project is focused on how exposure to drugs alters the epigenome and whether these changes are heritable by the offspring across multiple generations in models of addiction.


Ghazaleh is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Harvard Medical School and Assistant in Neuroscience at the Massachusetts General Hospital. She received her Ph.D. from Boston University School of Medicine in Pharmacology and Biomedical Neuroscience and completed her postdoctoral studies at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

MassGeneral Institute for Neurodegenerative Disease
CNY-Building #114
114 16th Street
Charlestown, MA 02129