From the Director

Dongsheng Cai, M.D., Ph.D.

Dongsheng Cai, M.D., Ph.D.


Both the nervous and immune systems are enormously complex. Each are well studied and boast extensive research and education networks in academic medicine. Less well know is how they complement and interact with each other to promote brain and body health. Or how the dysfunction of this dynamic can lead to serious illness—from Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease to many other aging-related diseases.

Furthermore, while inflammation is a normal and necessary biological function, particularly helpful in warding off infection, chronic inflammation in the brain and body has been implicated in an ever-expanding range of conditions and diseases, such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, cancer, aging and psychiatric disorders.

Einstein’s new Institute for Neuroimmunology and Inflammation (INI) will facilitate collaborative research in these interdisciplinary fields. We are very proud of Einstein’s existing strength in both neuroscience and immunology, which include ongoing projects on neural and systemic inflammation, as it provides us with an extraordinary opportunity to make significance progress in this emerging area of study.

In addition to research, the institute aims to promote education and training in the intertwined fields of neuroscience and immunology, so that future generations of scientists will be well equipped to further untangle their complex relationship and, ultimately, improve outcomes for many devastating diseases.

Dongsheng Cai, M.D., Ph.D.
Founding Director, Einstein Institute for Neuroimmunology and Inflammation
Professor, Department of Molecular Pharmacology
Young Men’s Division Chair in Physiology