Rusty Gage, PhD


Laboratory of Genetics

Vi and John Adler Chair for Research on Age-Related Neurodegenerative Disease

Rusty Gage
Salk Institute for Biological Studies - Videos


Grafted brain organoids provide insight into neurological disorders

LA JOLLA—Many neurological disorders—Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia, autism, even depression—have lagged behind in new therapies. Because the brain is so complex, it can be difficult to discover new drugs and even when a drug is promising in animal models, it often doesn’t work for humans. Read more »

Early developmental experiences influence DNA in the adult brain

LA JOLLA—In the perennial question of nature versus nurture, a new study suggests an intriguing connection between the two. Salk Institute scientists report in the journal Science that the type of mothering a female mouse provides her pups actually changes their DNA. The work lends support to studies about how childhood environments affect brain development in humans and could provide insights into neuropsychiatric disorders such as depression and schizophrenia. Read more »

Patients’ own cells yield new insights into the biology of schizophrenia

After a century of studying the causes of schizophrenia-the most persistent disabling condition among adults-the cause of the disorder remains unknown. Now induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) generated from schizophrenic patients have brought researchers from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies a step closer to a fundamental understanding of the biological underpinnings of the disease.
Read more »


BS, University of Florida
MS, Johns Hopkins University
PhD, Johns Hopkins University


Awards & Honors

  • W.M. Keck Foundation Award, 2024
  • The International Society for Stem Cell Research Achievement Award, 2020
  • ARCS Foundation Scientist of the Year, 2018
  • JCN-Wiley W. Maxwell Cowan Award in Developmental Neuroscience, 2017
  • Paul G. Allen Family Foundation Allen Distinguished Investigator Award, 2015
  • George A. Miller Prize in Cognitive Neuroscience, 2013
  • Fyssen Foundation International Prize, 2011
  • Cátedra Santiago Grisolia Award, 2011
  • International Society for Stem Cell Research President, 2011-2012
  • American Philosophical Society, 2010
  • European Molecular Biology Organization, Associate Member, 2009
  • Keio Medical Science Prize, 2008
  • The American Academy of Arts and Sciences Fellow, 2005
  • The National Academy of Sciences Fellow, 2003
  • The Max Planck Society/Gertrud Reemtsma Foundation Klaus-Joachim Zülch Prize, 2003
  • MetLife Award for Medical Research, 2002
  • National Academy of Medicine Fellow, 2001
  • Society for Neuroscience President, 2001
  • The Robert J. and Claire Pasarow Foundation Award, 1999
  • Max Planck Research Prize, 1999
  • Christopher Reeve Research Medal, 1997
  • Charles A. Dana Award for Pioneering Achievements in Health and Education, 1993
  • IPSEN Prize in Neuronal Plasticity, 1990