Dr. David Westaway, PhD

Team Lead: Animal Models


Professor of Neurology

University of Alberta



Centre For Prions and Protein Folding Diseases


Contact Dr. Westaway


Dr. David Westaway is a molecular biologist with a special interest in human neurologic disorders.  After obtaining a PhD in Biochemistry at the University of London he completed postdoctoral training with two Nobel Laureates, Harold Varmus and Stanley Prusiner, both at the University of California San Francisco. 


In 1994 Dr. Westaway moved from California to the Centre for Research in Neurodegenerative Disease at the University of Toronto.  Here his lab defined the prion-related doppel and shadoo proteins and created the TgCRND8 line of transgenic mice, a robust model of early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease.  TgCRND8 mice are widely used in over forty Alzheimer’s Disease labs in the USA and Europe, as well as in the drug development programs of several pharmaceutical companies.  In 2006 Dr Westaway moved to the University of Alberta where he is appointed as Professor (Neurology) and Director of the Centre for Prions and Protein Folding Diseases.


Dr. Westaway’s current work is directed towards an understanding of 1) common features in the pathogenesis of prion disease and Alzheimer’s Disease 2) the roles of the PrP, shadoo and chaperones in prion disease, and 3) use of model organisms to recapitulate key chemical events in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s.