Harris A. Gelbard, M.D., Ph.D.

Harris A. Gelbard, M.D., Ph.D.

Contact Information

University of Rochester Medical Center
School of Medicine and Dentistry
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 645
Rochester, NY 14642

Fax: (585) 276-1947
Administrative: (585) 273-1749
Office: (585) 273-1473
Lab: (585) 275-7391

Research Bio

Dr. Gelbard is the Director of the Center for Neural Development and Disease and Professor of Neurology, Pediatrics and Microbiology & Immunology at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Dr. Gelbard has 25 years of experience as a molecular neuropharmacologist, working in experimental models of neuroAIDS and HIV-1 neuroinflammation since 1992. As the leader of the NeuroAIDS research group in the UR's NIH-funded Development Center for AIDS Research and PO1 MH64570, in collaboration with Drs. Steve Dewhurst and Sanjay Maggirwar from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Dr. Gelbard has worked to develop new therapies for HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) over the past several years with a programmatic effort funded by the NIMH for over 10 years.

Our approach is to develop strategies to target mixed lineage kinase (MLK)-3, an upstream kinase that regulates neuroinflammation and neuronal function/fate through effects on downstream kinases, including Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). Working with our industry partner, Califia Bio (San Diego, CA), we have developed novel, brain-penetrant small molecules that efficiently inhibit MLK-3, Dr. Gelbard's lab is in the process of testing these new inhibitors in in vitro and in vivo models for HAND. Dr. Gelbard serves on numerous advisory boards of Center, U-level and P-level grants investigating the pathogenesis and treatment of HAND. He is the chair of the external advisory committee to the CNS HIV Anti-Retroviral Therapy Effects Research ("CHARTER," NIMH and NINDS N01 MH22005, 2002-2015), and a member of the Neurology Scientific Advisory Board to the Pediatric HIV/AIDS Cohort Study (PHACS) network (NICHD U01 HD052104, 2009-2014). Dr. Gelbard is the associate editor for the 3rd edition of The Neurology of AIDS (Oxford Press).

Awards & Honors (National)

National Merit Scholar 1972

Awards & Honors (Local)

Child Neurology Young Investigator Award 1990
Buswell Memorial Fellowship, University of Rochester 1990
First Prize, Wyeth-Ayerst Award or New Psychiatric Research, VIII World Congress of Psychiatry, Athens, Greece 1989
Sigma Xi, Thesis Research 1980


A Selectively Non-Selective Mixed Lineage Kinase 3 Inhibitor Potentiates the Effectiveness of Antiretroviral Therapy for HIV/AIDS

United States Serial NO.:
Filed Date: November 30, 2013
Title: MIxed Lineage Kinase Inhibitors for HIV/AIDS Therapies
Invented by: Harris Gelbard, Stephen Dewhurst, Howard Gendelman

Recent Journal Articles

Showing the 5 most recent journal articles. 94 available »

2011 Mar 2
Dash PK, Gorantla S, Gendelman HE, Knibbe J, Casale GP, Makarov E, Epstein AA, Gelbard HA, Boska MD, Poluektova LY. "Loss of neuronal integrity during progressive HIV-1 infection of humanized mice." The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2011 Mar 2; 31(9):3148-57.
2011 Feb
Perry SW, Norman JP, Barbieri J, Brown EB, Gelbard HA. "Mitochondrial membrane potential probes and the proton gradient: a practical usage guide." BioTechniques. 2011 Feb; 50(2):98-115.
2011 Jan
Kasischke KA, Lambert EM, Panepento B, Sun A, Gelbard HA, Burgess RW, Foster TH, Nedergaard M. "Two-photon NADH imaging exposes boundaries of oxygen diffusion in cortical vascular supply regions." Journal of cerebral blood flow and metabolism : official journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism. 2011 Jan; 31(1):68-81. Epub 2010 Sep 22.
Lu SM, Tremblay MÈ, King IL, Qi J, Reynolds HM, Marker DF, Varrone JJ, Majewska AK, Dewhurst S, Gelbard HA. "HIV-1 Tat-induced microgliosis and synaptic damage via interactions between peripheral and central myeloid cells." PloS one. 2011 6(9):e23915. Epub 2011 Sep 02.
2010 Oct 20
Perry SW, Barbieri J, Tong N, Polesskaya O, Pudasaini S, Stout A, Lu R, Kiebala M, Maggirwar SB, Gelbard HA. "Human immunodeficiency virus-1 Tat activates calpain proteases via the ryanodine receptor to enhance surface dopamine transporter levels and increase transporter-specific uptake and Vmax." The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2010 Oct 20; 30(42):14153-64.

Current Appointments

Director - Center for Neural Development & Disease - Primary Administrative
Professor - Department of Neurology, Center for Neural Development & Disease (SMD) - Primary
Professor - Department of Microbiology and Immunology (SMD)
Professor - Department of Pediatrics (SMD)


Neurology with Special Qualifications in Child Neurology - American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology


MD | Medicine | Northwestern Univ Medical Sch1983
PhD | Pharmacology | Northwestern Univ-Chicago Cmp1983
BS | Arts & Sciences | Northwestern Univ-Chicago Cmp1976

Post-Doctoral Training & Residency

Fellowship in Developmental Neuropharmacology at McLean Hospital09/01/1988 - 06/30/1990
Fellowship in Neurology at Children s Hospital09/01/1988 - 06/30/1990
Residency in Neurology at Children s Hospital07/01/1985 - 06/30/1988
Residency in Pediatrics at Children s Memorial Hospital, Northwestern University07/01/1984 - 06/30/1985
Internship in Pediatrics at Children s Memorial Hospital, Northwestern University07/01/1983 - 6/30/1984