Associate Professor, Department of Pathology
333 W. 10th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210
Areas of Expertise
- Developmental Neuroscience and Genetics
- Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience
- Neurotrauma, Neurological Disorders, and Gene/Clinical Therapies
- PhD: National Institute for Basic Biology, Japan
- Postdoctoral Training: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Current Research Description
Cortical inhibitory interneurons play a pivotal role in balancing/shaping brain activity as well as inducing neuronal plasticity. In addition, it has been shown that interneurons exhibit structural remodeling in the earliest phase of plastic changes in cortical circuits in response to damage to the sensory systems. Despite their implications in cortical functions and plasticity, molecular/cellular mechanisms underlying development and plasticity of interneuronal circuits remain largely unknown. Furthermore, little is known about the functional significance of interneuronal structural remodeling in cortical circuit plasticity. Cortical interneurons comprise diverse neuronal subtypes, each of which establishes specific local circuits and mediates a unique inhibitory function, and thus need to be dissected in a cell-type specific manner. Taking advantage of genetic approaches that enable a cell-type specific dissection, we will tackle the above questions. Our research programs should provide basic insight into functional recovery of the damaged brain.
More specifically, we are working on below projects.
- The molecular mechanisms underlying the fate-specification and synaptic specificity of cortical interneuron subtypes.
- The role of cortical interneuron subtypes and their structural remodeling in the development of chronic pain.