Dr Zsuzsanna Nagy MD, MA, DPhil

Zsuzsa Nagy

Institute of Inflammation and Ageing
Senior Lecturer

Contact details

Institute of Inflammation and Ageing
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Zsuzsanna Nagy is a Senior Lecturer in the Neurotrauma Research Group. 

Zsuzsanna has published over 50 research papers in scientific journals as well as reviews and book chapters in the fields of Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative diseases. Her grant income is partly from charitable organisations partly from industry. 

She is an enthusiastic communicator on different topics relating to dementia and gives frequent talks to various groups at both the local and national level. 

You can see Dr Nagy in action in the clip below where she gives a talk entitled "815,827 Dementia patients in the UK - and counting!" at a TEDx event. (This event used the TED conference format but was independently organised by a local community.) Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx.


  • DPhil, 1995
  • MD, 1989


Zsuzsanna Nagy qualified as an MD from the Medical School in Tirgu Mures Romania in 1989.  She started research as student research assistant in her third year of medical studies. The main topic of her interest was the development of the central nervous system, with special interest in the teratogenic effect of some hypnotic drugs. Following the completion of her internship in 1991 she has returned to research as a visiting scientist in the Human Anatomy Department of Oxford University. The following year marked a pivotal change in her research career – from CNS development she went on to study neurodegeneration. She has joined the Oxford Project to Investigate Memory and Ageing (OPTIMA) in 1992 and completed her DPhil under the supervision of Professors Margaret Esiri and David Smith on Alzheimer’s disease in 1995. Since then she is working on the pathogenic mechanisms of Alzheimer’s disease, novel biomarker development and early stage drug discovery for disease-modifying drugs. In 2004 she has moved to Birmingham University Medical School.

Her work on the involvement of the cell cycle in neurodegenerative diseases was groundbreaking and started a new chapter in the history of neurodegeneration research.

She has several patents covering novel biomarkers and therapeutic interventions for Alzheimer’s disease.

Clinica’s Business Editor Madeleine Armstrong spoke to several high-profile women in medtech about whether women are underrepresented at high levels in medical device companies and the potential reasons for this, as well as the specific challenges they have faced as a woman in this industry. In the clip below you can hear what Dr Nagy had to say on the matter.


  • BMedSc
  • PA
  • MBChB
  • MSc in Psychiatry
  • MRCPsych

Postgraduate supervision

Zsuzsanna is interested in supervising doctoral research students in the following area:

  • The role of cell cycle related molecules in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders.

If you are interesting in studying any of these subject areas please contact Dr Zsuzsanna Nagy directly, or for any general doctoral research enquiries, please email mds-gradschool@contacts.bham.ac.uk.

For a full list of available Doctoral Research opportunities, please visit our Doctoral Research programme listings.


Dr Nagy discusses recent publication

Research themes

Neurodegeneration, preclinical drug screening, biomarkers and risk factors for neurodegenerative diseases

Research activity

The role of cell cycle activation in neurodegenerative diseases

The main emphasis of her work over the last 15 years has been on the role of cell cycle reactivation in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and related disorders. This work ranged from the examination of cell cycle related gene expression in neurones of AD patients and controls to functional analysis of mutations of cell cycle regulatory genes associated with Alzheimer’s disease.  She was the first to put forward the unified hypothesis for the role of cell cycle related phenomena in neurodegenerative disorders in 1998 and carried on further refining aspects of this working hypothesis.

Her studies on cell cycle related pathways and genes associated with AD led to the development of a functional blood based biomarker for Alzheimer’s disease and the identification of novel genetic risk factors.

The identification of the cell cycle as a primary target for therapy was quickly followed by identification and preclinical screening of potentially disease-modifying drugs.

Other activities

  • Zsuzsa is a founder and Scientific Director of CytOx Ltd, a spin-out company from The Universities of Oxford and Birmingham
  • She is also the President elect (2015-2017) of the Lichfield Science and Engineering Society


Recent publications


Logan, A, Nagy, Z, Barnes, N, Belli, T, Di Pietro, V, Tavazzi, B, Lazzarino, G, Lazzarino, G, Bruce, L & Persson, LI 2022, 'A phase II open label clinical study of the safety, tolerability and efficacy of ILB® for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis', PLOS One, vol. 17, no. 5, e0267183. <http://10.1371/journal.pone.0267183>

Lazzarino, G, Di Pietro, V, Rinaudo, M, Nagy, Z, Barnes, N, Bruce, L, Signoretti, S, Mangione, R, Saab, MW, Tavazzi, B, Belli, T, Lazzarino, G, Amorini, AM & Logan, A 2022, 'ILB®, a low molecular weight dextran sulphate, restores glutamate homeostasis, amino acid metabolism and neurocognitive functions in a rat model of severe traumatic brain injury', International Journal of Molecular Sciences, vol. 23, no. 15, 8460. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23158460

Logan, A, Belli, T, Di Pietro, V, Tavazzi, B, Lazzarino, G, Mangione, R, Lazzarino, G, Morano, I, Qureshi, O, Bruce, L, Barnes, N & Nagy, Z 2022, 'The mechanism of action of a novel neuroprotective low molecular weight dextran sulphate: new platform therapy for neurodegenerative diseases like Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis', Frontiers in Pharmacology, vol. 13, 13:983853. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2022.983853

Lazzarino, G, Mangione, R, Belli, A, Di Pietro, V, Nagy, Z, Barnes, NM, Bruce, L, Ropero, BM, Persson, LI, Manca, B, Saab, MW, Amorini, AM, Tavazzi, B, Lazzarino, G & Logan, A 2021, 'ILB® attenuates clinical symptoms and serum biomarkers of oxidative/nitrosative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis', Journal of Personalized Medicine, vol. 11, no. 8, 794. https://doi.org/10.3390/jpm11080794

Robinson, J, Whitworth, K, Jinks, E, Nagy, Z, Bicknell, R & Lee, S 2020, 'An evaluation of the tumour endothelial marker CLEC14A as a therapeutic target in solid tumours', Journal of Pathology: Clinical Research, vol. 6, no. 4, pp. 308-319. https://doi.org/10.1002/cjp2.176

Zhuang, X, Maione, F, Robinson, J, Bentley, M, Kaul, B, Whitworth, K, Jumbu, N, Jinks, E, Bystrom, J, Gabriele, P, Garibaldi, E, Delmastro, E, Nagy, Z, Gilham, D, Giraudo, E, Bicknell, R & Lee, S 2020, 'CAR T-cells targeting tumor endothelial marker CLEC14A inhibit tumor growth', JCI Insight, vol. 5, no. 19, e138808. https://doi.org/10.1172/jci.insight.138808

Frumento, G, Verma, K, Croft, W, White, A, Zuo, J, Nagy, Z, Kissane, S, Anderson, G, Moss, P & Chen, FE 2020, 'Homeostatic Cytokines Drive Epigenetic Reprogramming of Activated T Cells into a "Naive-Memory" Phenotype', iScience, vol. 23, no. 4, 100989. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.100989

Lazzarino, G, Amorini, AM, Barnes, NM, Bruce, L, Mordente, A, Lazzarino, G, Pietro, VD, Tavazzi, B, Belli, A, Logan, A & Nagy, Z 2020, 'Low molecular weight dextran sulfate (ILB®) administration restores brain energy metabolism following severe traumatic brain injury in the rat', Antioxidants, vol. 9, no. 9, 850, pp. 1-18. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox9090850

Trevino, V, Cassese, A, Nagy, Z, Zhuang, X, Herbert, J, Antzack, P, Clarke, K, Davies, N, Rahman, A, Campbell, MJ, Guindani, M, Bicknell, R, Vannucci, M & Falciani, F 2016, 'A Network Biology Approach Identifies Molecular Cross-Talk between Normal Prostate Epithelial and Prostate Carcinoma Cells', PLoS Computational Biology, vol. 12, no. 4, e1004884. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1004884

Zhuang, X, Ahmed, F, Zhang, Y, Ferguson, H, Steele, JC, Steven, NM, Nagy, Z, Heath, VL, Toellner, K-M & Bicknell, R 2015, 'Robo4 vaccines induce antibodies that retard tumor growth', Angiogenesis, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 83-95. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10456-014-9448-z

Yates, SC, Zafar, A, Rabai, EM, Foxall, JB, Morrison, K, Nagy, S, Clarke, C, Esiri, MM, Christie, S, Smith, AD & Nagy, Z 2015, 'The effects of two polymorphisms on p21cip1 function and their association with Alzheimer's disease in a population of European descent', PLoS ONE, vol. 10, no. 1, e0114050. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0114050


Brain, K & Nagy, Z 2023, 'A modified Angoff B screening method for collusion detection in examinations delivered on the MSCAA and Speedwell platforms', The Clinical Teacher, vol. 20, no. S1, pp. 85-86. https://doi.org/10.1111/tct.13657

Other contribution

Barrett, T & Nagy, Z 2015, Sodium Valproate for the treatment of Wolfram syndrome EU/3/14/1428..


Tucker, J, Pikramenou, Z, Beggs, A, Nagy, Z & Chakrabarti, P May. 07 2019, Sensor WO2019043353A1: WO2019043353A1, Patent No. WO2019043353A1.

Tucker, JHR, Pikramenou, Z, Beggs, A, Nagy, Z & Chakrabarti, P May. 07 2019, Sensor WO2019043353A1: WO2019043353A1, Patent No. WO2019043353A1.

View all publications in research portal


Neurodegenerative disease; Alzheimer's disease; motor neurone disease; dementia; biomarkers