Lars Ittner

Director, Dementia Research Centre, Professor

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Personal profile


Professor Lars Ittner is the Director of the Dementia Research Centre and Professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences of the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Human Sciences at Macquarie University. Lars graduated from the University of Ulm in Germany and completed his thesis at the University of Zurich in Switzerland in 2002. This was followed by postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Zurich, where he studied neuronal stem cells and signalling pathways, and after moving to Australia in 2005, at the University of Sydney, focusing on basic pathomechanisms underlying neurodegenerative diseases. He became an independent group leader and Associate Professor at the University of Sydney in 2011, followed by an appointment to the University of New South Wales in 2013, where he became a Professor and headed the Dementia Research Unit and Transgenic Animal Unit in the Faculty of Medicine. In 2018 he joined Macquarie University to build the Dementia Research Centre. Lars was a German Research Foundation Fellow, a NHMRC Senior Research Fellow and is a current NHMRC Principal Research Fellow.

Research interests

Lars has made major contributions to the understanding of fundamental pathomechanisms in Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal dementia and identified several novel targets for drug development in these diseases. After 15 years of discovery research dedicated to identifying novel mechanisms underlying neuronal dysfunction and loss in dementia, his research program has evolved to translate these findings into novel therapeutic approaches. This new work is based on a portfolio of novel compounds, proprietary tools, drug target and preclinical disease models. Current projects include;

  • Develop small molecular inhibitors of disease-relevant kinases
  • Development of peptidomimetic modulators of excitotoxicity
  • Develop new antibodies for the treatment of dementia
  • Develop new gene therapies for neurodegenerative diseases


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