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

Building a better blood-brain barrier.
Lane-Donovan C, Herz J Elife 2017 Oct 6
Lipidomic and Transcriptomic Basis of Lysosomal Dysfunction in Progranulin Deficiency.
Evers BM, Rodriguez-Navas C, Tesla RJ, Prange-Kiel J, Wasser CR, Yoo KS, McDonald J, Cenik B, Ravenscroft TA, Plattner F, Rademakers R, Yu G, White CL, Herz J Cell Rep 2017 Sep 20 11 2565-2574
The ApoE receptors Vldlr and Apoer2 in Central Nervous System Function and Disease.
Lane-Donovan C, Herz J J. Lipid Res. 2017 Mar
ApoE, ApoE Receptors, and the Synapse in Alzheimer's Disease.
Lane-Donovan C, Herz J Trends Endocrinol. Metab. 2017 Jan
Functional Roles of the Interaction of APP and Lipoprotein Receptors.
Pohlkamp T, Wasser CR, Herz J Front Mol Neurosci 2017 10 54
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
Low-Density Lipoprotein Receptor-Related Protein-1 Protects Against Hepatic Insulin Resistance and Hepatic Steatosis.
Ding Y, Xian X, Holland WL, Tsai S, Herz J EBioMedicine 2016 May 7 135-45
Splicing therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease.
Wasser CR, Herz J EMBO Mol Med 2016 Feb

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