Basic Science Research

Biomarker Discovery Center
Established at the NJISA in late 2012, the Biomarker Discovery Center builds on the recent discoveries by NJISA researchers that could significantly change the diagnosis and treatment of a number of diseases. The Center is under the direction of Robert Nagele, PhD, who has received national recognition for his published research into the use of blood-borne biomarkers to diagnose early stages of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

Scientific and medical interest in biomarkers has intensified in recent years. The need for early diagnostics that are accurate, relatively non-invasive and cost effective is critical and Dr. Nagele’s published research has illustrated some promising early results, including:

In January 2013, the Biomarker Discovery Center was awarded a three-year, $799,800 grant from the Osteopathic Heritage Foundation to develop a blood test that can diagnose mild cognitive impairment caused by early-stage Alzheimer’s disease.

Along with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, ongoing projects at the Biomarker Discovery Center are focusing on blood-based biomarkers for the early detection of multiple sclerosis and various types of cancer and the potential use of these biomarkers to measure the ability of medications to treat these diseases.

Recent Publications by Robert Nagele, PhD
“Brain-reactive autoantibodies are nearly ubiquitous in human sera and may be linked to pathological changes in the context of blood-brain barrier breakdown,” Brain Research, (July 2010)

“Diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease based on disease-specific autoantibody profiles in human sera,” PLoS ONE, Aug. 3, 2011

“Diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease based on disease-specific autoantibody profiles in human sera,” PLoS ONE, Feb. 22, 2012

“Neuronal PAD4 expression and protein citrullination: Possible role in production of autoantibodies associated with neurodegenerative disease,” Journal of Autoimmunity, June 2012

“Diabetes and hypercholesterolemia increase blood-brain barrier permeability and brain amyloid deposition: Beneficial effects of LpPLA2 inhibitor darapladib,” Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, Feb. 2013 (in press)

“Natural IgG autoantibodies are ubiquitous in human sera, and their number is influenced by age, gender and disease,” (Feb. 2013, submitted for publication)