George Jackson, M.D., Ph.D.

A Short Biography:

Dr. Jackson was born and raised in west Texas and obtained the B.S., and M.A. degrees at the University of Texas at Austin. He completed his M.D. and Ph.D. in Human Biological Chemistry and Genetics at the University of Texas Medical Branch, where he first became interested in neuronal death under the tutelage of Dr. J. Regino Perez-Polo. He completed his internship in Medicine and residency in Neurology at the University of California, Los Angeles. His postdoctoral work at UCLA combined clinical training in Movement Disorders, as well as in Neurogenetics with Dr. S. Lawrence Zipursky.

Work Titles
UCLA Faculty, Center for Neurobehavioral Genetics
M.D., University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, 1993
1997 - 1999 UCLA School of Medicine
1993 - 1994 UCLA School of Medicine
1994 - 1997 UCLA School of Medicine
1999 American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology

Contact Information:

Mailing Address:

695 Charles E. Young Drive South
BOX 951763
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Detailed Biography:

An associate professor of neurology, Dr. George Jackson focuses on developing and utilizing Drosophila models of neuropsychiatric disorders to identify pathophysiological mechanisms and therapeutic targets. These include models for Huntington's, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Lou Gehrig's diseases. In September of 2008 Dr. Jackson relocated to the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston, where he is a Professor in the Departments of Neurology, Neuroscience and Cell Biology, and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Dr. Jackson holds the John Sealy Distinguished Chair of Parkinson's Disease Research and is Director of the George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases. He may be contacted at grjackso at


A selected list of publications:

Schaffer, B.A.J., Bertram, L., Miller, B.L., Mullin, K., Weintraub, S., Johnson, N., Bigio, E.H., Mesulam, M., Wiedau-Pazos, M., Jackson, G.R., Cummings, J.L., Cantor, R.M., Levey, A.I., Tanzi, R.E., and Geschwind, D.H.   Association of GSK-3beta with Alzheimer's disease and frontotemporal dementia, Arch Neurol, ; in press.
Jackson, G.R.   Guide to understanding Drosophila models of neurodegenerative disorders, PLoS Biol, 2008; 6: 0236-0239.
Ratnaparkhi, A., Lawless, G.M., Schweizer, F.E., Golshani, P., and Jackson, G.R.   A Drosophila model of ALS: Human ALS-associated mutation in VAP33A identifies a dominant negative mechanism, PLoS One, 2008; 3: e2334.
Sang, T.-K., Chang, H.-Y., Lawless, G.M., Ratnaparkhi, A., Mee, L., Ackerson, L.C., Maidment, N.T., Krantz, D.E., and Jackson, G.R.   A Drosophila model of mutant human parkin-induced toxicity demonstrates selective loss of dopaminergic neurons and dependence on cellular dopamine, J Neurosci, 2007; 27: 981-992.
Krantz, D.E., and Jackson, G.R.   Model Organisms and Neurogenetics, Neurogenetics of Psychiatric Disorders, 2007; Sawa, A., and McInnis, M.G., eds.: 117-133.
Karsten, S.L., Sang, T.-K., Gehman, L.T., Chatterjee, S., Liu, J., Lawless, G..M., Sengupta, S., Berry, R.W., Pomakian, J., Oh, H.S., Schulz, C., Hui, K.-S., Wiedau-Pazos, M., Vinters, H.V., Binder, L.I., Geschwind, D.H., and Jackson, G.R.   A genomic screen for modifiers of tauopathy identifies puromycin-sensitive aminopeptidase as an inhibitor of tau-induced neurodegeneration, Neuron, 2006; 51: 549-560.
The Huntington Study Group PHAROS Investigators   At risk for Huntington disease: The PHAROS (Prospective Huntington At Risk Observational Study) cohort enrolled, Arch. Neurol, 2006; 63: 991-996.
Fogel, B., Wu, M., Kremen, S., Murthy, K., Jackson, G.R., and Vanek, Z.   Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease presenting with alien limb sign, Movement Disorders, 2006; 21:1040-1042.
Sengupta, S., Horowitz, P.M., Karsten, S.L., Jackson, George R., Geschwind, D.H., Fu, Y, Berry, R.W., and Binder, L.I.   Degradation of tau protein by puromycin-sensitive aminopeptidase in vitro, Biochemistry, 2006; 45: 15111-15119.
Jackson, G.R., Sang, T.-K., and Taylor, J.P.   Drosophila Models of Polyglutamine Disorders, Genetic Instabilities and Neurological Diseases, 2006; 2: 587-594.
Slepko, N., Bhattacharyya, A.M., Jackson, G.R., Steffan, J.S., Marsh, J.L., Thompson, L.M., and Wetzel R.   Normal repeat length polyglutamine peptides accelerate aggregation nucleation and cytotoxicity of expanded polyglutamine proteins, Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2006; 103: 14367-14372.
Sang, T-K., and Jackson, G.R.   Drosophila models of neurodegenerative disease, NeuroRx, 2005; 2: 438-446.
Mee, L., Honkala, H., Kopra, O., Vesa, J., Finnila, S., Visapaa, I., Sang, T.-K., Jackson, G.R., Salonen, R., Kestila, M., and Peltonen, L.   Hydrolethalus syndrome is caused by a missense mutation in a novel gene HYLS1 Human Molecular Genetics , 2005; 14(11): 1475-1488.
Hogarth, P., Kayson, E., Kieburtz, K., Marder, K., Oakes, D., Rosas, D., Shoulson, I., Wexler, N.S., Young, A.B., and Zhao, H.   Interrater agreement in the assessment of motor manifestations of Huntington's disease Movement Disorders, 2005; 20(3): 293-297.
Sang, T.K., Li, C., Liu, W., Rodriguez, A., Abrams, J.M., Zipursky, S.L., and Jackson, G.R.   Inactivation of Drosophila Apaf-1 related killer suppresses formation of polyglutamine aggregates and blocks polyglutamine pathogenesis Human Molecular Genetics, 2005; 14(3): 357-372.
Jackson, G.R., Wiedau-Pazos, M., Sang, T.-K., Wagle, N., Brown, C.A., Massachi, S., and Geschwind, D.H.   Human wild-type tau interacts with wingless pathway components and produces neurofibrillary pathology in Drosophila Neuron, 2002; 34(4): 509-519.
Steffan, J.S., Bodai, L., Pallos, J., Poelman, M., McCampbell, A., Apostol, B.L., Kazantsev, A., Schmidt, E., Zhu, Y.Z., Greenwald, M., Kurokawa, R., Housman, D.E., Jackson, G.R., Marsh, J.L., and Thompson, L.M.   Histone deacetylase inhibitors arrest polyglutamine-dependent neurodegeneration in Drosophila Nature, 2001; 413(6857): 739-743.
Jackson, G.R., and Lang, A.E.   Hyperkinetic Movement Disorders, Textbook of Geriatric Neuropsychiatry, 2000; 2: 531-558.
Jackson, G.R.   Modeling Neurodegenerative Diseases in the Fruit Fly, Molecular Mechanisms of Neurodegenerative Diseases, 2000; 373-406.
Jackson, G.R., Salecker, I. Dong, X., Yao, X., Arnheim, N., Faber, P.W., MacDonald, M.E. and Zipursky, S.L.   Polyglutamine-expanded human huntingtin transgenes induce degeneration of Drosophila photoreceptor neurons Neuron , 1998; 21(3): 633-642.
Pan, Z., Sampath, D., Jackson, G., Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, R.   Nerve growth factor and oxidative stress in the nervous system Adv. Exp. Med. Biol, 1997; 429: 173-193.
Jackson, G.R., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Paradigms for study of neurotrophin effects in oxidant injury, Methods in Neuroscience, 1996; 30: 1-25.
Jackson, G.R., Werrbach-Perez, K., Pan, Z., Sampath, D., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Neurotrophin regulation of energy homeostasis in the central nervous system Developmental Neuroscience , 1994; 16(5-6): 285-290.
Sampath, D., Jackson, G.R., Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Effects of nerve growth factor on glutathione peroxidase and catalase in PC12 cells Journal of Neurochemistry , 1994; 62(6): 2476-2479.
Jackson, G.R., Sampath, D., Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Effects of nerve growth factor on catalase and glutathione peroxidase in a hydrogen peroxide-resistant pheochromocytoma subclone Brain Research , 1994; 634(1): 69-76.
Jackson, G.R., Werrbach-Perez, K., Ezell, E.L., Post, J.F., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Nerve growth factor effects on pyridine nucleotides after oxidant injury of rat pheochromocytoma cells Brain Research, 1992; 592(1-2): 239-248.
Taglialatela G., Angelucci, L., Ramacci, M.-T., Werrbach-Perez, K., Jackson, G.R., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Acetyl-L-carnitine stimulates the synthesis of nerve growth factor receptors in a rat pheochromocytoma cell line Biochem. Pharmacol. , 1992; 44: 577 585.
Foreman, P.J., Taglialatela, G., Jackson, G.R., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Dexamethasone blocks nerve growth factor induction of nerve growth factor receptor mRNA in PC12 cells Journal of Neuroscience Research , 1992; 31(1): 52-57.
Jackson, G.R., Morgan, B.C. Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Antioxidant effect of retinoic acid on PC12 rat pheochromocytoma International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience, 1991; 9(2): 161-170.
Taglialatela, G., Angelucci, L., Ramacci, M.T., Werrbach-Perez, K., Jackson, G.R., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Acetyl-L-carnitine enhances the response of PC12 cells to nerve growth factor Developmental Brain Research , 1991; 59(2): 221-230.
Werrbach-Perez, K., Jackson, G., Marchetti, D., Morgan, B., Thorpe, L., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Growth factor-mediated protection in aging CNS Progress in Brain Research , 1990; 86: 183-194.
Perez-Polo, J.R., Foreman, J., Jackson, G., Shan, D., Taglialatela, G., Thorpe, L.W., and Werrbach-Perez, K.   Nerve growth factor and neuronal cell death, Mol. Neurobiol. , 1990; 4: 57-91.
Perez-Polo, J.R., Werrbach-Perez, K., Jackson, G., Beck, C., Marchetti, D., Morgan, B., Taglialatela, G., Ramacci, M.T., and Angelucci, L.   Neuronotrophic factors in aged rat central nervous system, Aging Brain and Dementia: New Trends in Diagnosis and Therapy, 1990; 296-318.
Jackson, G.R., Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Role of nerve growth factor in oxidant-antioxidant balance and neuronal injury. II. A conditioning lesion paradigm J. Neurosci. Res. , 1990; 25: 369-364.
Jackson, G.R., Apffel, L., Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Role of nerve growth factor in oxidant-antioxidant balance and neuronal injury. I. Stimulation of hydrogen peroxide resistance Journal of neuroscience Research , 1990; 25(3): 360-368.
Jackson, G.R., Morgan, B., Werrbach-Perez, K., and Perez-Polo, J.R.   Model for the study of conditioning lesions in the pathophysiology of the nervous system, Advances in Myochemistry , 1989; 2: 103-115.

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