Joachim Herz graduated from Medical School at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, in 1983. He continued training as a resident in surgery in Germany and England until he joined the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in 1985. There, he received training in Molecular Biology and conducted research work that included the identification and cloning of a novel member of the LDL receptor gene family, the LDL receptor-related protein (LRP). In 1989 Dr. Herz joined the Department of Molecular Genetics where in 1998 he attained his current position of Professor. He is the holder of the Thomas O. Hicks Family Distinguished Chair in Alzheimer’s Disease Research.

Dr. Herz’s current research focuses on the role of the members of the LDL receptor gene family as signaling receptors in the brain and in the vascular wall. Recent work from his laboratory have defined roles for the LDL receptor gene family in the formation of the mammalian brain, where it regulates the migration and positioning of neurons during embryonic development, and control of vascular wall integrity, where the LRP functions in conjunction with the PDGF receptor.


Medical School
Heidelberg University (1983), Medicine

Research Interest

  • Brain Development and Alzheimer's Disease
  • Lipid Metabolism and Atherosclerosis
  • Physiological functions of the LDL receptor gene family


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

ApoE, ApoE Receptors, and the Synapse in Alzheimer's Disease.
Lane-Donovan C, Herz J Trends Endocrinol. Metab. 2017 Jan
Reelin: Neurodevelopmental Architect and Homeostatic Regulator of Excitatory Synapses.
Wasser CR, Herz J J. Biol. Chem. 2016 Dec
Genetic Restoration of Plasma ApoE Improves Cognition and Partially Restores Synaptic Defects in ApoE-Deficient Mice.
Lane-Donovan C, Wong WM, Durakoglugil MS, Wasser CR, Jiang S, Xian X, Herz J J. Neurosci. 2016 Sep 36 39 10141-50
Physiologic Reelin does not play a strong role in protection against acute stroke.
Lane-Donovan C, Desai C, Pohlkamp T, Plautz EJ, Herz J, Stowe AM J. Cereb. Blood Flow Metab. 2016 May

Honors & Awards

  • Alexander-von-Humboldt Professorship
  • Heinrich-Wieland Prized
    International Lipid Research Award (2007)
  • Thomas O. and Cinda Hicks Family Distinguished Chair
  • Wolfgang Paul Award
    Humboldt Foundation of Germany (2001)
  • Lucille P. Markey Scholar
  • Syntex Scholar