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Dr. Iliya M Lefterov, MD, PhD

Research Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health


100 Technology Dr., BRIDG1, Room 564, Pittsburgh 15219
R-znvy: vyvlny@cvgg.rqh
Primary Phone: 967-838-1451
Web site:

Lynette Clark, yipynex@cvgg.rqh, 967-179-4255

Personal Statement

R. KOLDAMOVA AND I. LEFTEROV LAB: CELLULAR AND MOLECULAR MECHANISMS OF NEURODEGENERATION USE OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED MOUSE MODELS TO EXPLORE THE ROLE OF LIPID ASSOCIATED GENES IN PATHOGENESIS OF ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE. Current projects relate to genetically modified mouse models of Alzheimer Disease, cholesterol metabolism. A particular focus is on Liver X Receptors (LXR). Their regulatory function in the brain in health and disease is being approached using complex transgenic mouse models of altered lipid metabolism. Behavioral phenotyping and histopathology are used to reveal clues of LXR controlled regulatory networks in brain. Age dependent and disease related changes in Immediate Early Genes (IEG) response to environmental factors, is the second major research theme. Molecular pharmacological and genetic approaches, gene profiling and chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by massive parallel sequencing (ChIP-seq) in intact animal models of Alzheimer disease are being used to assess IEG controlled signaling pathways. AD pathogenesis in those models is assessed in the context of gene-environment interactions genome-wide using high-throughput genomic and epigenetic tools, diet and dietary manipulations.


MD, Medical Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria; General Medicine
PhD, Medical Academy  & Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria; Mol. Biology & Genetics

Institute of Medical Genetics, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Molecular techniques for prenatal diagnosis of metabolic and inherited diseases

Institute of Human Genetics, University of Gottingen, Gottingen, Germany
Approaches for Positional cloning
Course development in Medical Genetics

Department of Pharmacology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Fogarty International Foundation Research Grant
Molecular Biology and Biochemistry

Selected Publications

1.    Fitz N., Tapias V., Cronican A., Castranio E., Salem M., Carter A., Lefterova M., Lefterov I.,
and Koldamova R. (2015) Opposing effects of Apoe/Apoa1 double deletion on amyloid β pathology and
cognitive performance in APP mice Combined  deletion of Apoe and Apoa-I has a contrasting
role in Amyloid-b  pathology and cognition. Brain, under review.

2.    Mounier A., Georgiev D., Nam K.N., Wolfe, C., Castranio E., Carter A., Fitz N.F., Schug J., Koldamova R. and Lefterov I. (2015) Effect of Bexarotene activated Retinoid X Receptors on adult neurogenesis and neuronal differentiation. J Neuroscience, revised version under review.

3.    Lefterov I, Schug J, Mounier A, Nam KN, Fitz NF, and Koldamova R. (2015) mRNA-sequencing
reveals transcriptional up-regulation of Trem2 in response to Bexarotene treatment. Neurobiol. Dis. 82: 132-140.

4.    Lefterov, I. and R. Koldamova (2014). Metabolic Disorders and Neurodegeneration,
introduction to the special issue. Neurobiol Dis 72 Pt A: 1-2.

5.    Koldamova R, Fitz NF, Lefterov I. (2014) ATP – binding cassette transporter A1: from metabolism
to neurodegeneration. Neurobiol. Dis. 72 Pt A: 13-21

6. Koldamova R, Schug J, Lefterova M, Cronican AA, Fitz NF, Davenport FA, Carter A, Castranio EL, Lefterov I. (2014) Genome-wide approaches reveal EGR1-controlled regulatory networks associated with
neurodegeneration. Neurobiol. Dis.  63: 107-114

7.    Fitz NF, Castranio EL, Carter AY, Kodali R, Lefterov I, Koldamova R. (2014) Improvement of Memory Deficits and Amyloid-β Clearance in Aged APP23 Mice Treated with a Combination of Anti-Amyloid-β
Antibody and LXR Agonist. J Alzheimer’s Dis. 41(2): 535-549

8.    Fitz, N. F., Cronican, A. A., Lefterov, I., and Koldamova, R. (2013) Comment
on ”ApoE-directed therapeutics rapidly clear β-amyloid and reverse deficits
in AD mouse models”. Science 340, 924–c.

9.    Cronican, A. A., Fitz, N. F., Carter, A., Saleem, M., Shiva, S., Barchowsky, A., Koldamova, R., Schug, J., and Lefterov, I. (2013). Genome-wide alteration of histone H3K9 acetylation pattern in mouse offspring prenatally exposed to arsenic. PLoS One 8, e53478.

10.  Fitz, N. F., Cronican, A. A., Saleem, M., Fauq, A. H., Chapman, R., Lefterov, I., and Koldamova, R. (2012). Abca1 deficiency affects Alzheimer’s disease-like phenotype in human ApoE4 but not in ApoE3-targeted re- placement mice. J Neurosci
32, 13125–13136.

Iliya M Lefterov
© 2018 by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health

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