Advisory Board

Professor Collin Ewald

Collin Ewald, Ph.D. is Professor at the Institute of Translational Medicine, Department of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich. He leads his lab which focuses on exploring a novel mechanism that promotes healthy aging by providing basic research and systems-level approaches to develop novel strategies to treat age-related pathologies.

The aim of Ewald’s lab project is to determine the molecular mechanisms that prolong health during aging, using the nematode C. elegans, in order to develop novel strategies to treat age-related pathologies. In particular, their focus is on how prolonged ECM homeostasis promotes healthy aging. Aging is the major risk factor for developing diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative disorders.

Their recent work has shown that many health- and longevity-promoting interventions re-activate the expression of extracellular matrix (ECM) genes during aging. This ECM enhancement is required and sufficient for extending the lifespan of C. elegans. Their current important investigation is the role of the ECM with the accumulation of extracellular protein aggregates associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Collin is the founder and is currently the President of the Swiss Society For Aging Research since January 2017 and has also been the Vice President and member of the Swiss Society for Matrix Biology since 2016. He is also a mentor at LongHack hackathon and at On Deck, where he is conducting research from science to start up transition.

He has received multiple awards, including NYAS Future Entrepreneur recognized by the New York Academy of Sciences, and is named as one of the top 1000 Longevity Leaders worldwide and is one of the top 15 Longevity Influencers in Switzerland. In 2015, Collin received the Genetics Society of America (GSA)’s DeLill Nasser Award for Professional Development in Genetics.

Collin earned his Ph.D. in Neuroscience in 2011 and his Master’s of Philosophy (M.Phil.) in Biology in 2008 both from the City University of New York. In 2007, Collin earned his Master’s Degree of Science and in 2005 he earned his Bachelor’s Degree of Science in Molecular Biology, both from the University of Basel, Switzerland.

For his Master’s research Collin characterized memo-1 (mediator of ErbB2-​driven cell motility 1) as a novel regulator of NADPH-​oxidase activity in C. elegans in the laboratories of Dr. Joy Alcedo and Dr. Nancy E. Hynes at the Friedrich Miescher Institute (FMI) for Biomedical Research, University of Basel and part of the Novartis Research Foundation in Switzerland.

As Graduate Research Fellow in Neuroscience at City University of New York, Collin, while working on his Doctoral Thesis titled Multifunctional roles of APL-​1 in C. elegans, found that overexpression of the extracellular domain of APL-​1 (Amyloid Precursor Protein-​like 1) modulates development, metabolism, lifespan, and learning in C. elegans.

He did his Postdoctoral Research in the T. Keith Blackwell Lab at Harvard Medical School between 2011 and 2014. He became an Instructor in Medicine there in 2015 until 2016. While doing his postdoc, Collin was also Research Fellow at Joslin Diabetes Center until 2014, and Research Associate in the Research Division of Joslin Diabetes Center until 2015.

While doing his Postdoctoral Research, Collin discovered that reduced insulin/IGF-​1 signaling extends lifespan via two genetically distinct pathways. He also demonstrated that almost all longevity interventions require and invest in replenishing of extracellular matrix components, and he identified a transcription factor (ATF-​5) that is required and sufficient to increase lifespan when protein translation is reduced.

Collin continued his successful research with several more first author papers including one in Nature.

Briefly, Collin was a Visiting Scholar at Whitehead Institute at MIT in Cambridge, USA between 2015 and 2016.

Read his most cited articles SKN-1/Nrf, stress responses, and aging in Caenorhabditis elegans and Dauer-independent insulin/IGF-1-signalling implicates collagen remodelling in longevity.

Read The Matrisome during Aging and Longevity: A Systems-Level Approach toward Defining Matreotypes Promoting Healthy Aging and End-of-life targeted degradation of DAF-2 insulin/IGF-1 receptor promotes longevity free from growth-related pathologies.

Watch Extracellular matrix remodeling during longevity at ARDD 2021.

Visit his work page and work profile, his Lab Page, his LinkedIn profile, Sci Forschen Profile, and his Google Scholar profile. Follow him on Facebook, Publons, ORCID, Research Gate, and Twitter.