Dr. Brandon Pearson is a neuroscientist and neurotoxicologist. Dr. Pearson completed a postdoctoral fellowship in cell biology and physiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and in molecular biology, aging, and epigenetics at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases. The cause of many neurological and psychiatric diseases remains equivocal; Dr. Pearson’s research program develops innovative molecular and cellular strategies, using tractable model organisms to reveal the role of genetic, epigenetic, and environmental factors in brain disease phenotypes. He relies heavily on transcriptomics as a sensitive indicator of brain dysfunction, and in doing so, has revealed novel overlapping pathologies amongst aging-associated and neurodevelopmental diseases such as autism spectrum disorder. Dr. Pearson seeks to circumvent the limitations of individual epidemiological and animal studies by creating multi-disciplinary approaches that promote rapid discovery in the environmental contributions to disease.
Areas of Expertise
Healthy Aging and Longevity, Bioinformatics, Autism, Neurodevelopmental Disorders, Environmental Toxins, Toxicology, Epigenetics, Gene-Environment Interactions, Genetics
Xie K, Neff F, Markert A, Rozman J, Aguilar-Pimentel JA, Amarie OV, Becker L, Brommage R, Garrett L, Henzel KS, Hoelter SM, Janik D, Lehmann I, Moreth K, Pearson BL, Racz I, Rathkolb B, Ryan DP, Schroeder S, Treise I, Bekeredjian R, Busch DH, Graw J, Ehninger G, Klingenspor M, Klopstock T, Ollert M, Sandholzer M, Schmidt-Weber C, Weiergraeber M, Wolf E, Wurst W, Zimmer A, Gailus-Durner V, Fuchs H, Hrabe de Angelis M, Ehninger D (2017). Every-other-day feeding extends lifespan but fails to delay many symptoms of aging in mice. Nature Communications 8, 155.
Ryan DP, Henzel KS, Pearson BL, Siwek ME, Papazoglou A, Paesler K, Mueller R, Xie K, Schroeder S, Becker L, Garrett L, Hoelter SM, Neff F, Racz I, Rathkolb B, Rozman J, Ehninger G, Klingenspor M, Klopstock T, Wolf E, Wurst W, Zimmer A, Fuch H, Guilus-Durner V, Hrabe de Angelis M, Sidiropoulou K, M Weiergraeber M, Ehninger D (epub, Ahead of Print, Accepted for publication, 14 Feb 2017). A paternal methyl donor-rich diet altered cognitive and neural functions in offspring mice. Molecular Psychiatry
Pearson BL, Ehninger D (2017). Environmental chemicals and aging. Current Environmental Health Reports 4:38-43.
Pearson BL, Simon JM, McCoy ES, Salazar G, Fragola G, Zylka MJ (2016). Identification of chemicals that mimic transcriptional changes associated with autism, brain aging and neurodegeneration. Nature Communications 7:11173.
King IF, Yandava CN, Mabb AM, Hsiao JS, Huang H, Pearson BL, Calabrese JM, Starmer J, Parker JS, Magnuson T, Chamberlain SJ, Philpot BD, Zylka MJ. (2013). Topoisomerases facilitate transcription of long genes linked to autism. Nature 501: 58-62.
Pearson BL, Corley MJ, Vasconcellos A, Blanchard DC, Blanchard RJ (2013). Heparan sulfate deficiency in autistic postmortem brain tissue from the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles. Behavioural Brain Research 243: 138-145
Sugawara A, Pearson BL, Blanchard DC, Ward MA. 2012. Mouse females devoid of exposure to males during fetal development exhibit increased maternal behavior. Psychoneuroendocrinology 37(3): 383-395.
Maeng S, Hunsberger J, Pearson B, Yuan P, Wei Y, McCammon J, Schloesser RJ, Zhou R, Du J, Chen G, McEwen B, Reed JC, & Manji HK. 2008. BAG1 plays a critical role in regulating recovery from both manic-like and depression-like behavioral impairments. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences U.S.A. 105(25), 8766-8771.
Shaltiel G, Maeng S, Malkesman O, Pearson B, Tragon T, Rogawski M, Gaisor M, Luckenbaugh D, Chen G, & Manji HK. 2008. Evidence for the involvement of the kainate receptor subunit GluR6 (GRIK2) in mediating behavioral displays related to behavioral symptoms of mania. Molecular Psychiatry 13, 858-872.