The ultimate function of the nervous system is to facilitate survival. To accomplish this task in a dynamically changing environment, the animal's behavioural strategies must alter accordingly given its context. One of the fundamental basis of this change is neuromodulation. Using the well characterised nervous system of C. elegans, I am investigating how sensory inputs can elicit these changes both at the cellular level and at the molecular level.
In addition, I am also interested in novel molecules involved with sensory transduction. Within the genome, there are still hundreds of highly conserved genes that remain to be characterised. Amongst this collection, many are specifically enriched in neurons and have completely unknown function. These genes may have key biological functions in all nervous systems. I am currently exploring some of these genes for their role in sensory transduction.
Whole cell patch clamp
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Associated News Items
Rabinowitch I, Chatzigeorgiou M, Zhao B, Treinin M, Schafer WR (2014), “Rewiring neural circuits by the insertion of ectopic electrical synapses in transgenic C. elegans.” Nat Commun 5:4442 Details
Zhao B, Schafer WR (2013), “Neuropeptide signaling: from the gut.” Curr Biol 23(11):R481-3 Details
Zhao, B (2012), “The Source of Our Morality” Science Vol. 337 no. 6098 p. 1042