Dr. Reitz's research focuses on the identification of genetic risk factors for Alzheimer disease and related neurodegenerative disorders. The foundation for this work is the targeted collection of selected patient cohorts with an apparent high genetic load of the disease under study, such as rare but well-documented families, nuclear families with at least two affected family members, pedigrees with marked variability in disease penetrance and expression, or families with extreme or distinctive endophenotypes such as very early disease onset. In these distinct cohorts with unique genetic heritage, Dr. Reitz employs advanced genetic and genomic approaches including whole exome and genome sequencing, large-scale targeted re-sequencing and RNA sequencing approaches to identify rare highly penetrant risk and disease modifying genetic variations. Identification of such variants is expected to enhance our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying dementia, and is hoped to help generate diagnostic and therapeutic strategies that are better tailored to a patient's pecific genetic make-up.
Honors & Awards
AFAR Paul Beeson Physician Faculty Scholar in Aging Research Award
Columbia Psychiatric-Neurological Epidemiology Early Career Award
Lise-Meitner-Award to a Young Scientist for Excellence by the Ministry of Innovation, Science, Research and Technology of the Federal Republic of Germany
Select Global Activities
Whole-genome sequencing of unexplained early-onset Alzheimer's disease: This project aims to identify genetic variants increasing susceptibility to early-onset Alzheimer's disease.
Whole-genome sequencing of multiplex African American families with late-onset Alzheimer's disease: This project aims to identify genetic loci associated with late-onset Alzheimer's disease in African Americans.