Research Faculty

630 W 168th Street
P&S 12-510
New York, NY 10032

Phone: 212-342-6887
Fax: 212-342-4554
Anatomy & Cell Biology
Taub Institute

Rudolph Leibel (Noami Berrie Diabetes Center, Columbia University)
Gregory Petsko (Rosenstiel Basic Medical Sciences Research Center, Brandeis University)

Diego Ezequiel Berman, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Pathology & Cell Biology
Research Summary

After graduating from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, with a B. Sc. in Biology and Molecular Genetics, Dr. Berman began an MSc/PhD program at the Department of Neurobiology of The Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel under the supervision of Prof. Yadin Dudai. Dr. Berman’s PhD thesis focused on the molecular mechanisms of memory consolidation, retrieval, and extinction in the mammalian brain. His work helped unveil the different intracellular signaling cascades that cortical neurons utilize to store and modify memory traces. Upon completing his PhD, Dr. Berman became a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior at Columbia University. His previous experience studying the molecular bases of memory formation led him to develop an interest in the metabolic aspects of memory dysfunction. Dr. Berman joined the laboratory of Dr. Gilbert Di Paolo at the Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging Brain at Columbia University and began focusing his research on genetically-modified models to uncover novel metabolic pathways underlying Alzheimer’s disease. As an Associate Research Scientist in the laboratory of Dr. Scott Small, Dr. Berman is currently using a combination of brain imaging techniques, genetically-modified mouse models and drug development tools to further understand the human pathophysiology of Alzheimer’s disease.
Selected Publications

Khan, U., Liu, L., Provenzano, F., Berman, D.E., Profaci, C., Sloan, R., Mayeux, R., Duff, K., and Small, S.A. (2013) Molecular drivers and cortical spread of lateral entorhinal cortex dysfunction in preclinical Alzheimer's disease. Nature Neuroscience, in press.

McIntire, L.B.*, Berman, D.E.*, Myaeng, J., Staniszewski, A., Arancio, O., Di Paolo, G., and Kim, T.,W. (2012) Reduction of Synaptojanin1 Ameliorates Synaptic and Behavioral Impairments in a Mouse Model of Alzheimer's Disease. Journal of Neuroscience, 32 (44), 15271-6.
* co-first authorship

Cossec, J.C., Lavaur, J., Berman, D.E., Rivals, I., Hoischen, A., Stora, S., Ripoll, C., Mircher, C., Grattau, Y., OlivoMarin J. C., de Chaumon, F., Lecourtois, M., Antonarakis, S. E., Veltman, J. A., Delabra, J. M., Duyckaets, C., Di Paolo, G., and Potier, M. C. (2012) Trisomy for Synaptojanin1 in Down syndrome is functionally linked to the enlargement of early endosomes. Human Molecular Genetics, 21 (14), 3156-3172.

Berman, D.E., Dall’Armi, C., Voronov, S. V., McIntire L. B., Zhang, H., Moore A. Z., Staniszewski, A., Arancio, O., Kim, T. W., and Di Paolo, G. (2008) Oligomeric amyloid-peptide disrupts Phosphatidylinositol–4,5–biphosphate Metabolism. Nature Neuroscience, 11 (5), 547-554.

Echeverria, V., Berman, D.E., Arancio, O. (2007) Oligomers of beta-amyloid Peptide Inhibit BDNF-induced arc expression in Cultured Cortical Neurons. Current Alzheimer Research, 4 (5), 518-521.

Eisenberg, M., Kobilo, T., Berman, D.E., and Dudai, Y. (2003) Stability of Retrieved Memory is Inversely Correlated with Trace Dominance. Science, 301 (5636), 1102-1104.

Berman, D.E., Hazvi, S., Stehberg, J., Bahar, A., and Dudai, Y. (2003) Conflicting Processes in the Extinction of Conditioned Taste Aversion: Behavioral and Molecular Aspects of Latency, Stagnation, and Spontaneous Recovery. Learning & Memory, 10 (1) 16-25.

Berman, D.E. (2003) Modulation of Taste-Induced Elk-1 Activation by Identified Neurotransmitter Systems in the Insular Cortex of the Behaving Rat. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 79 (1), 124-128.

Berman, D.E. (2002) For Each A Road. Learning & Memory, 9 (3), 97-98.

Berman, D.E., and Dudai, Y. (2001) Memory Extinction, Learning Anew, and Learning the New: Dissociations in the Molecular Machinery of Learning in Cortex. Science, 291 (5512), 2417-2419.

Berman, D.E., Hazvi, S., Neduva, V., and Dudai, Y. (2000) The Role of Identified Neurotransmitter systems in the Response of Insular Cortex to Unfamiliar Taste: Activation of ERK1-2 and Formation of a Memory Trace. Journal of Neuroscience, 20 (18), 7017-7023.

Berman, D.E., Hazvi, S., Rosenblum, K., Seger, S., and Dudai, Y. (1998) Specific and Differential Activation of Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase Cascades by Unfamiliar Taste in the Insular Cortex of the Behaving Rat. Journal of Neuroscience, 18 (23), 10037-10044.

Rosenblum, K., Berman, D.E., Hazvi, S., Lamprecht, R., and Dudai, Y. (1997) NMDA Receptor and the Tyrosine Phosphorylation of its 2B Subunit in Taste Learning in the Rat Insular Cortex. Journal of Neuroscience, 17 (13), 5129-5135.

Rosenblum, K., Berman, D.E., Hazvi, S., and Dudai, Y. (1996) Carbachol mimics effects of sensory input on tyrosine phosphorylation in cortex. Neuroreport, 7 (8), 1401-1404.


Berman, D.E. and Dudai, Y. (2004) MAPK cascades in the Brain: Lessons from Learning, in: Methods in Molecular Biology, 250, 315-322, Humana Press Inc, New Jersey, USA.

Berman, D.E. (2003) Taste Aversion and Preference Learning in Animals, in: Learning and Memory, 2nd edition (ed. John H. Byrne), pp. 645-647, Macmillan Reference, USA.

Current Projects

The lab’s projects focus on the role of the retromer complex, a vital element of the intracellular protein trafficking machinery, in the etiology and pathophysiology of Alzheimer's Disease. The lab is developing novel genetic and pharmacological tools to further understand how retromer complex modulation in neurons contributes to the early pathological steps in the neurodegenerative process.

Honors and Awards

Diabetes and Endocrinology Research Center Award – Columbia U (2012) Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center Award – Columbia U (2008)
Mind and Life Institute, Varela Research Award (2005)
Mind and Life Summer Research Institute Fellowship (2005)
Human Frontier Science Program, Long-Term Fellowship (2003-2005)
John F. Kennedy Award, for outstanding Ph.D. thesis (2002)
Katzir Travel Fellowship (2001)
Sara Zalc Foundation Award (2001)
Committees , Council, and Professional Society Memberships

Society for Neuroscience (SFN)
New York Academy of Science (NYAS)

Alzheimer’s disease, cellular trafficking, drug development

Contact the Pathology Webmaster at