Professor of Biology


Dr. Helfand received his BS at Stanford University where he worked with Dr. Norman K. Wessells and discovered the neuronal growth factor Ciliary NeuroTrophic Factor. Dr. Helfand obtained his MD degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine. During this time he spent a year at UC London with Drs. Martin Raff and Av Mitchison. He completed his Medical Internship at Montefiore Medical Center and his Neurology Residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital. He is Board Certified in Neurology.

After Postdoctoral training with Drs. Corey Goodman and David Hogness at Stanford and at Yale with John Carlson and Doug Kankel he took a position at the University of Connecticut Health Center where he worked from 1990 to 2005.

In 2005 he moved to Brown University where he is Professor in the Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology and Biochemistry in the Division of Biology and Medicine. His laboratory focuses on understanding the molecular genetic mechanisms underlying aging and longevity using the model system, Drosophila melanogaster. Dr. Helfand is an Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar, recipient of a MERIT award from the National Institute on Aging, has twice been awarded the Glenn Award for Research in Biological Mechanisms of Aging and was awarded the Glenn Foundation/American Federation of Aging Research Breakthroughs in Gerontology Award. In 2017 he was elected a Fellow of the AAAS and a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America.

Brown Affiliations

Research Areas