Joseph Masdeu, MD, PhD

Graham Family Distinguished Chair for Neurological Sciences, Stanley H. Appel Department of Neurology
Professor of Neurology, Institute for Academic Medicine
Full Member, Research Institute
Director, Nantz National Alzheimer Center
Houston Methodist
Weill Cornell Medical College

Research Lab


Dr. Masdeu trained in Psychiatry at the University of Valencia in Spain and in Neurology at Mt. Sinai Hospital in Chicago. He then served as a Fellow in Neuropathology at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital at Harvard Medical School. He was an Assistant and Associate Professor of Neurology at the Albert Einstein School of Medicine in New York, and has served as a Professor and Chair of Neurology at New York Medical College. Dr. Masdeu became a Professor and Chair of Neurology and Neuroscience at the University of Navarre Medical School in Pamplona, Spain. From 2008-2014, Dr. Masdeu was a senior staff physician and scientist in the Section of Integrative Neuroimaging of the Clinical Brain Disorders Branch at the National Institutes of Health. He is chairman of the Neuroimaging Research Group of the World Federation of Neurology. He has been a director of the American Academy of Neurology and president of the American Society of Neuroimaging. Since 2007, he has been Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Neuroimaging. He is the author of 144 peer-reviewed papers, 62 book chapters, and seven books, including Localization in Clinical Neurology, a standard in the field, now in its 6th edition. Dr. Masdeu joined the Houston Methodist Research Institute in 2014. 

Description of Research

Dr. Masdeu’s main areas of research have been the following:

-Clarifying the neurobiology of Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders
-Using spontaneous lesion models and/or imaging to map the localization of function in the human brain
-Developing novel neuroimaging signs and implementing neuroimaging as a biomarker of neurological disease

Areas Of Expertise

Alzheimer’s disease Brain lesions Neuroimaging Psychoses Beta-amyloid
Education & Training

, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Harvard University
, Facultad de Medicina de la Universidad de Navarra, Pamplona

NMDA Receptor Internalization by Autoantibodies: A Reversible Mechanism Underlying Psychosis?
Masdeu, JC, Dalmau, J & Berman, KF 2016, Trends in Neurosciences, vol 39, no. 5, pp. 300-310. DOI:

Common Variation in the DOPA Decarboxylase (DDC) Gene and Human Striatal DDC Activity In Vivo
Eisenberg, DP, Kohn, PD, Hegarty, CE, Ianni, AM, Kolachana, B, Gregory, MD, Masdeu, JC & Berman, KF 2016, Neuropsychopharmacology. DOI:

Tau, amyloid, and hypometabolism in the logopenic variant of primary progressive aphasia
Pascual, B & Masdeu, JC 2016, Neurology, vol 86, no. 5, pp. 487-8. DOI:

Advanced neuroimaging methods towards characterization of early stages of Alzheimer’s disease
Sepulcre, J & Masdeu, JC 2016, Methods in Molecular Biology, vol 1303, pp. 509-519. DOI:

Genetic and degenerative disorders primarily causing dementia
Masdeu, JC & Pascual, B 2016, Handbook of Clinical Neurology, vol 135, pp. 525-64. DOI:

Quantitative analysis of 3D T1-weighted gadolinium (Gd) DCE-MRI with different repetition times
Rockers, ED, Pascual, MB, Bajaj, S, Masdeu, JC & Xue, Z 2016, . in Medical Imaging and Augmented Reality - 7th International Conference, MIAR 2016, Proceedings. vol. 9805, Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics), vol. 9805, Springer Verlag, pp. 259-268, 7th International Conference on Medical Imaging and Augmented Reality, MIAR 2016, Bern, Switzerland, 24-26 August. DOI:

In Memoriam: Frank A. Rubino, MD
Freeman, WDA, Brazis, PW, Biller, J, Masdeu, JC, Merrilees, GR & Olson, S 2015, JAMA Neurology, vol 72, no. 11, pp. 1384-1385. DOI:

New scoring methodology improves the sensitivity of the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-Cognitive subscale (ADAS-Cog) in clinical trials
Verma, N, Beretvas, SN, Pascual, B, Masdeu, JC, Markey, MK & Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative 2015, Alzheimers Research and Therapy, vol 7, no. 1, pp. 64. DOI:

Advanced neuroimaging methods towards characterization of early stages of Alzheimer's disease
Sepulcre, J & Masdeu, JC 2015, . in Systems Biology of Alzheimers Disease. Springer New York, pp. 509-519. DOI:

Large-scale brain networks of the human left temporal pole: A functional connectivity MRI study
Pascual, B , Masdeu, JC, Hollenbeck, M, Makris, N, Insausti, R, Ding, SL & Dickerson, BC 2015, Cerebral Cortex, vol 25, no. 3, pp. 680-702. DOI:

Intracranial arteries in individuals with the elastin gene hemideletion of Williams syndrome
Wint, DP, Butman, JA, Masdeu, JC, Meyer-Lindenberg, A, Mervis, CB, Sarpal, D, Morris, CA & Berman, KF 2014, American Journal of Neuroradiology, vol 35, no. 1, pp. 90-94. DOI:

Normal structural and functional neuroanatomy for SPECT and PET imaging
Masdeu, JC, Ajtai, B, Leung, DK, Lignelli-Dipple, A & Ichise, M 2013, . in Functional Cerebral SPECT and PET Imaging: Fourth Edition. Wolters Kluwer Health Adis (ESP), pp. 54-69.

Other Gait Disorders
Masdeu, JC 2013, Current Clinical Neurology, vol 44, pp. 247-273. DOI:

Midbrain presynaptic dopamine tone predicts sustained and transient neural response to emotional salience in humans: fMRI, MEG and FDOPA PET
Jabbi, M, Nash, T, Kohn, P, Ianni, A, Rubinstein, D, Holroyd, T, Carver, FW, Masdeu, JC, Shane Kippenhan, J, Robinson, SE, Coppola, R & Berman, KF 2013, Molecular Psychiatry, vol 18, no. 1, pp. 4-6. DOI:

Searching for novelty: Challenges with open access data
Masdeu, JC 2012, Annals of Neurology, vol 72, no. 6. DOI:

Serum IgG antibodies against the NR1 subunit of the NMDA Receptor not detected in schizophrenia
Masdeu, JC, GonzáLez-Pinto, A, Matute, C, De Azúa, SR, Palomino, A, De Leon, J, Berman, KF & Dalmau, J 2012, American Journal of Psychiatry, vol 169, no. 10, pp. 1120-1121. DOI:

Decreased carbon-11-flumazenil binding in early Alzheimer's disease
Pascual, B, Prieto, E, Arbizu, J, Marti-Climent, JM, Peñuelas, I, Quincoces, G, Zarauza, R, Pappatà, S & Masdeu, JC 2012, Brain, vol 135, no. 9, pp. 2817-2825. DOI:

Imaging brain networks and brain diseases
Masdeu, JC 2012, Current Opinion in Neurology, vol 25, no. 4, pp. 373-374. DOI:

The neurobiology of glucocerebrosidase-associated parkinsonism: A positron emission tomography study of dopamine synthesis and regional cerebral blood flow
Goker-Alpan, O, Masdeu, JC, Kohn, PD, Ianni, A, Lopez, G, Groden, C, Chapman, MC, Cropp, B, Eisenberg, DP, Maniwang, ED, Davis, J, Wiggs, E, Sidransky, E & Berman, KF 2012, Brain, vol 135, no. 8, pp. 2440-2448. DOI:

The neurobiology of Alzheimer disease defined by neuroimaging
Masdeu, JC, Kreisl, WC & Berman, KF 2012, Current Opinion in Neurology, vol 25, no. 4, pp. 410-420. DOI: