Anna Pimenova, PhD

Dr. Anna Pimenova is a molecular and cellular biologist with 8+ years of experience in validation of potential targets for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Dr. Pimenova graduated with honors with the Engineer in Biotechnology degree from the State Technological Institute in St. Petersburg, Russia, which is also her hometown. Then she pursued her doctoral studies at the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium under the supervision of Prof. Bart De Strooper, an internationally recognized expert in AD field. Dr. Pimenova used agonists of serotonergic receptors to modulate production of amyloid-beta peptide and test the amyloid cascade hypothesis. She discovered the signaling pathway leading to the activation of alpha-secretase and how stimulation of this pathway is beneficial against pathological and behavioral changes in AD mouse model. In addition, Dr. Pimenova worked in collaboration with Shire-Movetis and Janssen Pharmaceuticals companies (Belgium) to test chemical inhibitors and inhibitory nanobodies of beta-secretases for sensitivity and specificity to better characterize off-target effects and find novel substrates. This work will further facilitate development of safe and effective therapeutics for AD. For her postdoctoral training Dr. Pimenova joined the lab of Prof. Alison Goate at ISMMS (New York), a recognized geneticist with solid record of discovery in human genetics of AD and alcohol and nicotine addiction disorders. Dr. Pimenova became successful in implementing different types of assays, e.g. phagocytosis and apoptosis, for validation of genetic risk factors for AD using cell lines and co-culture of different cell types derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells and mouse models. She has published several papers looking at the functional properties of microglial cells, brain-resident immune cells, and continues to study the role of this cell type in AD pathogenesis.