Geschwind Lab

UCLA Office of the Vice Chancellor and Dean

Dear Colleagues:

With great pleasure, we write to announce the appointment of Daniel H. Geschwind, M.D. Ph.D. as Senior Associate Dean and Associate Vice Chancellor of Precision Medicine in the UCLA Health System and David Geffen School of Medicine, beginning March 1, 2016.  Dr. Geschwind is Gordon and Virginia MacDonald Distinguished Chair in Human Genetics, Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, Director of the Center for Autism Research and Treatment, and Co-Director of the Center for Neurobehavioral Genetics.  He was chosen for this position through an internal search. 

The Senior Associate Dean and Associate Vice Chancellor of Precision Medicine is a new position created in response to a report by the 2014 Genetics Task Force.  In this role, Dr. Geschwind will be responsible for coordinating all Precision Medicine efforts in the Health System and School, leading a unit that has responsibility for creating and running an integrated Precision Medicine diagnostic service, including genomics and other specialized testing services, associated bioinformatics, and biobanking.  He will be the principal UCLA representative in intercampus precision medicine efforts and in regional genomics initiatives that may be undertaken with non-UC institutions in Southern California.  Dr. Geschwind will direct a new Institute for Precision Medicine, which will be developed and serve as the home for precision and genomic medicine activities on campus.  As Associate Vice Chancellor for Precision Medicine, Dr. Geschwind will report to UCLA Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences John Mazziotta and Interim Vice Chancellor for Research Ann Karagozian.

Dr. Daniel GeschwindDr. Geschwind is a highly accomplished neuroscientist.  Research in his laboratory focuses on integrating basic neurobiology, genetics, and genomics with translational studies of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative conditions, focusing on autism spectrum disorders, dementia, neural repair, and inherited ataxia.  The lab has pioneered the application of gene expression and network methods in neurologic and psychiatric disease, working in collaboration with dozens of other laboratories to connect molecular pathways to nervous system function.  The over-arching goal is to develop new therapeutics for nervous system disorders for which disease-altering therapies are not currently available.  Dr. Geschwind has also put considerable effort into fostering large-scale collaborative patient resources for genetic research and data sharing.  He played a major role in the founding, and has provided continuing scientific oversight, of the Autism Genetic Resource Exchange, the largest collection of multiplex autism families in the world.

Dr. Geschwind received an A.B. degree in psychology and chemistry at Dartmouth College and M.D. and Ph.D. degrees at Yale University School of Medicine in 1991.  He completed neurology residency at UCLA, where he has remained following training, joining the faculty in 1997.  Dr. Geschwind has served on numerous scientific advisory boards, including the NIH Council of Councils, the Executive Council of the American Neurological Association (ANA), and serves as co-chairs of the neurogenetics section of the Faculty of 1000 Medicine.  He received the Derek Denny-Brown Neurological Scholar Award from the ANA in 2004, the Scientific Service Award from Autism Speaks in 2007, and the Ruane Prize from the Brain and Behavior Foundation in 2013, and he is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine.

In announcing Dr. Geschwind’s appointment, we wish to recognize and extend sincere thanks to the members of the Search Committee, whose names are listed below.  We thank them for their dedication, commitment, and hard work in identifying an outstanding candidate for the position.

Please join us as we congratulate Dr. Geschwind and wish him great success in his new role.

Sincerely,

John Mazziotta, M.D., Ph.D.

Vice Chancellor, UCLA Health Sciences

CEO, UCLA Health

Kelsey C. Martin, M.D., Ph.D.

Interim Dean, DGSOM

Precision Medicine Search Committee
Nelson Freimer, Chair
Scott Binder
Eleazar Eskin
Alex Hoffman
Paivi Pajukanta
Susan Perlman
Kathrin Plath
Karen Reue

The Geschwind laboratory is dedicated to improve treatment and understanding of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative conditions, focusing on autism spectrum disorders, dementia, neural repair, and inherited ataxia. Our work leverages the fields of genetics and genomics, coupled with basic neurobiology, to obtain a systems level understanding of disease. We have pioneered the application of gene expression and network methods in neurologic and psychiatric disease, working in collaboration with dozens of other laboratories to connect molecular pathways to nervous system function. Our over-arching goal is to develop new therapeutics for nervous system disorders for which disease-altering therapies are not currently available.


Plot of a module of genes co-expressed during human cortical development. These genes share a pattern of mRNA expression across cortical regions and developmental time, and are involved in transcriptional and chromatin regulation. Genes that are highly connected (hubs) are predicted to be essential to the function of the module. Highlighted here are genes known to be disrupted by highly pathogenic de novo mutations in individuals with autism, suggesting that many of these mutations affect genes essential to gene regulation at a time when neuron fate is determined in developing cortex.