John Hardy, PhD: Personalized Medicine for the Major Neurodegenerative Diseases: Genetic Predictions & Mechanistic Insights
John Hardy, Chair of Department of Molecular Neuroscience and Reta Lila Weston Laboratories, UCL Institute of Neurology UK John Hardy received his degree in biochemistry from Leeds in 1976 and his PhD in neuropharmacology from Imperial College in 1979. He did postdocs at the MRC Neu-ropathogenesis Unit and the Swedish Brain Bank, in Umea, where he started to work on Alzheimer’s disease. In 1985, he became a lecturer in biochemistry and molecular ge-netics at St Mary’s Hospital, Imperial College, where he began working on the genetics of Alzheimer’s disease. In 1991, Dr. Hardy led the group that found the first mutation in the amyloid gene that caused Alzheimer’s. This finding led him and others to formulate the amyloid hypothesis for the disease. In 1992, he moved to the United States, to the University of South Florida. In 1996, he went to the Mayo Clinic, where he became chair of the Department of Neuroscience in 2000. In 1998, he was part of the consortium that identified mutations in the tau gene in Pick’s disease. In 2001, he moved to the NIH to become the chief of the Laboratory of Neurogenetics, where he was part of the group that found triplications in the synuclein gene that caused Parkinson’s disease. He returned to the Department of Molecular Neuroscience at the Institute of Neurolo-gy in 2007. Dr. Hardy has won the Allied Signal, Potamkin, MetLife, and Kaul Prizes for his work on Alzheimer’s disease and the Anna Marie Opprecht Prize for his work on Parkinson’s disease. In 2011, he was awarded the Khalid Iqbal Lifetime Achievement Award in Alzheimer’s Disease Research and the IFRAD European Grand Prize for Alz-heimer's Research. In 2014, he was awarded the Dan David Prize endowed by the Dan David Foundation, headquartered at Tel Aviv University, the Thudichum Medal from the Biochemical Society, and is the recipient of the 3rd Lord Brain Memorial Medal. He was also awarded the Robert A. Pritzker Prize by the Michael J. Fox Foundation. He has been elected a member of the Academy of Medical Sciences and has been awarded an honorary MD by the University of Umea, Sweden. He was made an FRS by the Royal Society in 2009 and in 2010 was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science degree by the University of Newcastle. During 2015, Dr. Hardy was awarded the Piepenbrock-DZNE Award, and the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences followed in 2016 from the Helis Prize. He has three adult children and three grandchildren who live in the U.S.