Galvan Hart, Veronica, Ph.D.

Veronica Galvan Hart, Ph.D.


Donald W. Reynolds Endowed Chair of Aging Research

Co-Director, Center for Geroscience and Healthy Brain Aging

Contact Information:

Phone: (405) 271-2227  X32778

Lab: (405) 271-2227 X32696


Staff Scientist, Buck Institute for Research on Aging, 2006-2008

Postdoctoral Fellow, Buck Institute for Research on Aging, 2000-2005

Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1994-1999

M.S., Molecular Biology, Center for Advanced Studies in Exact Sciences University, Buenos Aires, 1994

Research Interests:

Dr. Galvan’s research focuses on the molecular and biochemical processes that lead to dementia in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and other neurological disorders of aging.  She has generated models of Alzheimer's and used them to identify novel mechanisms of neurodegeneration.  Dr. Galvan pioneered the study of mechanisms that link brain aging to the pathogenesis of AD and other dementias. Her laboratory identified the mammalian-target of rapamycin (mTOR) as a central driver of disease in surrogate models of AD, providing the first evidence for a role of a molecular mediator of aging in the etiology of AD and related dementias. Dr. Galvan’s laboratory also provided the first description of pathogenic forms of tau in brain microvasculature of Alzheimer's and other tauopathies, and singled out the induction of cellular senescence as a major mechanism of tau-induced vascular dysfunction of AD.

The Galvan Laboratory uses primary culture-based models, in vivo optical and MRI-based functional brain imaging, single-cell proteomic and transcriptomic approaches, and neurobehavioral tools to measure the impact of experimental interventions on functional outcomes, and define the mechanisms involved.  The goal of this work is to determine how mTOR, pathogenic tau and cellular senescence can be targeted for therapeutic purposes and advance the neurodegeneration and geroscience fields.

Selected Publications:

  1. Van Skike CE, Hussong SA, Hernandez SF, Banh AQ, DeRosa N and Galvan V (2021) mTOR attenuation with rapamycin reverses neurovascular uncoupling and memory deficits in mice modeling Alzheimer’s disease. J Neurosci  In press.
  2. Dorigatti AO, Hussong SA, Hernandez SF, Sills AM, Salmon AB, Galvan V (2020) Primary neuron and astrocyte cultures from postnatal Callithrix jacchus: a non-human primate in vitro model for research in neuroscience, nervous system aging, and neurological diseases of aging. Geroscience 42: 1685-1698.  PMID: 33063253.
  3. Van Skike, CE and Galvan V. (2020) Cerebrovascular dysfunction links aging to neurological disease. Aging  12:13847. PMCID: PMC7425428.
  4. Nyul-Toth A, Tarantini S, Kiss T, Toth P, Galvan V, Tarantini A, Yabluchanskiy A, Csiszar A, Ungvari Z (2020) Increases in hypertension-induced cerebral microhemorrhages exacerbate gait dysfunction in a mouse of Alzheimer’s disease. Geroscience 42:1685-1698. PMID: 32844283.
  5. Van Skike CE, Lin AL, Roberts Burbank R, Halloran JJ, Hernandez SF, Cuvillier J, Soto VY, Hussong SA, Javors MA, Hart MJ, Fischer KE, Austad SN, Galvan V (2020) mTOR drives cerebrovascular, synaptic, and cognitive dysfunction in normative aging. Aging Cell 19:e13057. PMID: 31693798.
  6. Kaeberlein M and Galvan V. (2019) Rapamycin and Alzheimer’s disease: Time for a clinical trial? Sci Transl Med 11: eaar4289. PMCID: PMC6762017. 
  7. Jahrling JB, Lin AL, DeRosa N, Hussong SA, Van Skike CE, Girotti M, Javors M, Zhao Q, Maslin LA, Asmis R, Galvan V. (2018) mTOR Drives Cerebral Blood Flow and Memory Deficits in LDLR-/- Mice Modeling Atherosclerosis and Vascular Cognitive Impairment. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. PMID: 28511572.
  8. Van Skike, CE and Galvan V. (2018) A perfect sTORm: The role of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) in cerebrovascular dysfunction of Alzheimer’s disease. Gerontology  64(3):205. PMCID: PMC5876078.
  9. Van Skike CE, Jahrling JB, Olson AB, Sayre NL, Hussong SA, Ungvari ZI, Lechleiter JD, Galvan V. (2018) Inhibition of mTOR protects the blood-brain barrier in models of Alzheimer’s disease and vascular cognitive impairment. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 314: H693-H703.  PMID: 29351469.       
  10. Tarantini S, Fulop GA, Kiss T, Farkas E, Zölei-Szénási D,, Galvan V, Toth P, Csiszar A, Ungvari Z, Yabluchanskiy A. (2017) Demonstration of impaired neurovascular coupling responses in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease using functional laser speckle contrast imaging. Geroscience. Jun 3. doi: 10.1007/s11357-017-9980.  PMCID: PMC5636768.
  11. Castillo-Carranza DL, Nilson AN, Van Skike CE, Jahrling JB, Patel K, Garach P, Gerson JE, Sengupta U, Abisambra J, Nelson P, Troncoso J, Ungvari Z, Galvan V and Kayed R (2017) Cerebral microvascular accumulation of tau oligomers in Alzheimer’s disease and related tauopathies. Aging Dis. 8: 257-266.  PMID: 28580182.
  12. Galvan V. (2016) Vascular mTOR-dependent mechanisms linking the control of aging to Alzheimer’s disease. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA): Molecular Basis of Disease Special Issue: ‘Vascular Contributions to Cognitive Impairment and Dementia (VCID)’ 1862:992-1007. PMCID: PMC6762019.
  13. Jahrling J and Galvan V (2015) TOR-dependent cerebrovascular aging in Alzheimer’s disease.  Curr Trends Neurol. 8:231.
  14. Lin A, Jahrling J, Romero P, Bakshi V, Galvan V, Richardson A. (2015) Rapamycin rescues vascular, metabolic and learning deficits in apolipoprotein E4 transgenic mice with pre-symptomatic Alzheimer’s disease. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 37:217. PMID: 26721390.                         
  15. Sun YX, Ji X, Mao X, Xie L, Jia J, Galvan V, Greenberg DA and Jin K (2014). Differential activation of mTOR complex 1 signaling in human brain with mild to severe Alzheimer’s disease. J Alz Dis. 38: 437-44. PMID: 23979023.  
  16. Lin A, Pulliam D, Sathyaseelan D, Halloran JJ, Burbank RR, Hussong SA, Bresnen A, Soundararajan A, Muir E, Duong TQ, Viscomi C, Zeviani M, Richardson AG, Van Remmen H,  Fox PT, Galvan V (2013) Decreased in vitro mitochondrial function is associated with enhanced brain metabolism, blood flow and memory in Surf1-deficient mice. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 33:1605-1611. PMID: 23838831.
  17. Lin A, Halloran JJ, Burbank RR, Korde S, Zheng W, Hussong SA, Podlutskaya N, Strong R, Richardson A, Hart MJ, Fox PT, Lechleiter J, Galvan V (2013). Chronic rapamycin restores brain vascular integrity and function through NO synthase activation and improves memory in symptomatic mice modeling Alzheimer’s disease. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. Jun 26. PMID: 23801246.              
  18. Pierce A, Podlutskaya NP, Halloran JJ, Hussong SA, Lin PY, Burbank R, Strong R, Richardson R, Hart MJ and Galvan V (2013) Over-expression of heat shock factor 1 phenocopies the effect of chronic inhibition of TOR by rapamycin and is sufficient to ameliorate Alzheimer's-like deficits in mice modeling the disease. J Neurochem. 194:880-893. PMID: 23121022.
  19. Beauquis J, Pavia P, Pomilio C, Vinuesa A, Podlutskaya N, Galvan V, Saravia F. (2012) Environmental enrichment prevents astroglial pathological changes in the hippocampus of APP transgenic mice, model of Alzheimer’s disease. Exp Neurol 239:28-37. PMID 23022919                                
  20. Sultana R, Robinson RA, Bader Lange M, Fiorini A, Galvan V, Fombonne J, Baker A, Gorostiza O, Zhang J, Cai J, Pierce WM, Bredesen DE, Butterfield A. (2012) Do proteomics analyses provide insights into reduced oxidative stress in the brain of an Alzheimer’s disease transgenic mouse model with an M631L amyloid precursor protein substitution and thereby the importance of amyloid-beta-resident methionine 35 in Alzheimer disease pathogenesis? Antioxid Redox Signal. 17:1507-14. PMID:  22500616.
  21. Halloran JJ, Hussong S, Podlutskaya N, Burbank R, Austad SN, Hart MJ, Fischer K and Galvan V (2012) Chronic inhibition of mammalian target of rapamycin by rapamycin modulates cognitive and non-cognitive components of behavior throughout lifespan in mice. Neuroscience 223:102-113.  PMID: 22750207.
  22. Hart MJ, Sharma MK, Liu M, Cuny GD, Glicksman MA and Galvan V (2012) Development of a high-throughput screen targeting caspase 8-mediated cleavage of the amyloid precursor protein. Analyt Biochem 421:467. PMID: 22178911.
  23. Zhang J, Rao R, Spilman P, Mangada J, Xie L, Vitelli C, Gorostiza OF, Madden DT, Zeng X, Jin K, Hart MJ, Bredesen DE and Galvan V (2011) Endogenously EGFP-Labeled Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells. Aging and Dis. 2:18-29. PMCID: PMC3160738
  24. Spilman P, Podlutskaya N, Hart MJ, Debnath J, Gorostiza O, Bredesen D, Richardson A, Strong R and Galvan V (2010) Inhibition of mTOR by rapamycin abolishes cognitive deficits and reduces amyloid-β levels in a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease. PLoS One. 5:e9979.  PMID: 20376313      
  25. Zhang J, Gorostiza O, Tang H, Bredesen DE, Galvan V. Reversal of learning deficits in hAPP transgenic mice carrying a mutation at Asp664: A role for early experience. (2009) Beh Brain Res 206:202-07. PMID: 19751769.

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