Old age is associated with an enhanced susceptibility to systemic vascular disorders like strokes and poor recovery from brain injuries. The aim of Professor Aurel Popa-Wagner’s group is, therefore, to unravel cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying aging progression and its significance for brain diseases. His group has a long-standing interest in molecular mechanisms of brain remodelling in the aged rat brain.
Recently, he also became interested in systemic aging by aiming to model gene regulatory networks for regenerative processes after brain injury in aged animals. Another avenue of recent research is the cellular therapy of strokes by using bone marrow-derived mesenchymal and mononuclear cells.
Aurel received his PhD in biochemistry from the Institute of Biochemistry at the University of Karlsruhe, Germany, followed by postdoctoral training at Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, USA. Subsequently, he held tenure-track Assistant Professor at the University of Medicine Erlangen, Germany, and Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology at Medical University Greifswald, Ernst-Moritz-Arndt University, Greifswald. In 1996, he was appointed Professor of Experimental Neurology at the Clinic of Neurology, Medical University Greifswald.
Since 1998 he has been Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy in Craiova, Romania. In 2012, he joined the the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Medicine Rostock, Germany, and in 2017 he joined the Chair of Vascular Neurology and Dementia at the Clinic of Neurology, Medical University, Essen, Germany.