Stuart Zola, PhD

Stuart Zola, PhD

Director, Yerkes National Primate Research Center
Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine
Co-Director, Emory Alzheimer's Disease Research Center
Senior Research Career Scientist, Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center

One of the nation's leading neuroscientists, Stuart Zola, PhD, has contributed valuable insights into how the brain organizes memory and how this relates to memory problems such as amnesia. He also is regarded as a leader in the movement to better communicate science and research to the public.

As the director of the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Dr. Zola oversees diverse research programs that address health issues such as AIDS, malaria and other infectious diseases, cocaine addiction, childhood visual deficits, organ transplantation and cognitive development and decline. Scientists at Yerkes also study social behavior in nonhuman primates.

Dr. Zola's own research focuses on memory, its formation, consolidation and retrieval. He is perhaps best known for developing an animal model of human amnesia that conclusively identified brain structures critical to memory function. His research has contributed significant insights into the memory loss in humans that results from head trauma and characterizes progressive diseases such as Alzheimer's. His research also has provided knowledge about less severe memory problems that often accompany depression, chronic stress and normal aging.

In addition to his leadership role at Yerkes and within Emory's Robert W. Woodruff Health Sciences Center, Dr. Zola is a Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory's School of Medicine. Co-Director of the Emory University Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, and he holds a Senior Research Career Scientist position at the Atlanta Veterans Administration Medical Center, the highest honor the VA bestows.