Faculty by Graduate Program

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ASU Neuroscience PhD Program Faculty

Program Directors

Rita Sattler

Sattler received her PhD from the University of Toronto, Canada. Her research focuses on studies of neurodegeneration in ALS and FTD using human patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells as a disease model.

Jason Newbern
Associate Professor

Dr. Newbern's research is centered on developmental neuroscience. His laboratory studies the biochemical mechanisms that direct the formation of the brain and spinal cord.

Office: ISTB1 426 Lab: ISTB1 477BA-CA


Neuroscience (PhD)

Neuroscience involves the study of the nervous system and its relation to an organism's function. It encompasses how gene...

Program Faculty

James Abbas
Associate Professor

Abbas is the director of the Center for Adaptive Neural Systems. His research interests are in applications of neural engineering techniques and technology in the area of medical rehabilitation.

ISTB1 225A
Gro Amdam

Amdam is a Norwegian biologist who is internationally known for her research on behavior and aging in honey bees.

ISTB-1 314
Associate Professor
Madeline Andrews
Assistant Professor

Andrews' lab utilizes neural organoids, transplantation models and omics approaches to study human brain development and disease.

Tamiko Azuma
Associate Professor

Azuma's research focuses on attention, memory and language processing.

COOR 3476
Timothy Balmer
Asst Professor

Dr. Balmer is interested in how signals are processed in brain circuits involved in hearing and balance and their associated disorders including tinnitus and vestibular disorders.

Leslie Baxter
Adjunct Faculty

Dr. Baxter is a clinical neuropsychologist who assesses cognitive functioning in patients with neurological syndromes. She has a specialty in brain mapping for some patients requiring neurosurgery. Her research interests incl

Heather Bean
Assistant Professor

Bean applies bioanalytical chemistry methods to characterize microbial metabolomes and identify biomarkers of lung disease.

LSE 315 School of Life Sciences
Visar Berisha
Assistant Professor

Berisha's research seeks to develop and apply new machine learning and statistical signal processing tools to better understand and model signal perception.

COOR 3472
Heather Bimonte-Nelson

For more than two decades, Bimonte-Nelson has conducted preclinical evaluations of multiple domains of cognitive function as related to aging. She heads the Memory and Aging Laboratory at ASU.

Esther Borges Florsheim
Assistant Professor
727 E Tyler Street Rm A330B
B. Blair Braden
Assistant Professor

B. Blair Braden is the director of the Autism and Brain Aging Laboratory at ASU.

975 S Myrtle Ave P.O. Box 870102
Sara Brownell

Brownell is a neuroscientist turned full-time education researcher, who teaches undergraduate biology while studying biology education.

Christopher Buneo
Assoc Professor
ISTB1 181B
Cheryl Conrad
Asst Vice Pres & Professor

Conrad's research interests include studies on the neurobiology of chronic stress, sex differences in neuroplasticity following chronic stress, and links between stress and depression or anxiety disorders.

Psychology, Rm 208 950 S. McAllister Ave (Box 1104)
Ayoub Daliri
Asst Professor

Ayoub Daliri's research is focused on understanding neural mechanisms underlying speech production and stuttering.

975 S Myrtle Ave, COOR 3456
Natalia Dounskaia
Associate Professor

Dounskaia investigates how the central nervous system adjusts its descending signals to the biomechanical properties of the limbs. Her teaching interests include fundamental issues of motor control and their applications.

425 North Fifth Street ABC1 222
Assistant Research Professor
Nancy Eisenberg
Regents Professor

Eisenberg's research focuses on emotion regulation and developmental psychopathology.

PSY 251B
Jennifer Fewell
President’s Professor; Interim Director

Fewell is a President’s Professor and Interim Director of the School of Life Sciences. Her research centers around the organization and evolution of insect societies.

ISTB 302
Richard Gerkin
Research Associate Professor

Gerkin investigates how smell perception, learning and behavior are represented in the brain. He also pursues neuroinformatics, development of tools and standards to facilitate analysis of neuroscience models and data.

Jon Harrison

Harrison is an environmental physiologist who studies how insects function, interact with their environment and evolve.

ISTB1 324 School of Life Sciences
Tomoki Hashimoto
Neuroscience Program Faculty

Dr. Hashimoto leads a program that focuses on the translational research of cerebrovascular diseases.

Stephen Helms Tillery
Associate Professor

Helms Tillery is a neuroscientist who is particularly interested in how the brain learns to use sensory information in the control of skilled motor tasks.

Bert Hoelldobler
University Professor and Regents' Professor

Hölldobler is a Pulitzer Prize-winning sociobiologist who uses insect societies to study behavioral mechanisms of communication, cooperation and conflict. He's a member of several national and international academies.

LSE 218
Ian Hogue
Assistant Professor

Ian Hogue is a virologist who studies how alpha herpesviruses, including human Herpes Simplex Virus 1 (HSV-1), infects the nervous system.

Matthew Huentelman
Adjunct Faculty

Dr. Huentelman's research interests center around the investigation of the “-omics” (genomics, transcriptomics, and proteomics) of neurological traits and disease.

Leonidas Jassemidis

Emeritus Professor Iasemidis is recognized as an expert in the dynamics of epileptic seizures.

BDH 218
Ming-Hung Kao
Associate Professor

Kao’s research focuses on the development of high-quality designs for functional neuroimaging experiments where pioneering brain mapping technologies are used to improve knowledge about the brain's inner workings.

Jeffrey Kleim

Studies in Kleim's laboratory are being used to test novel therapies for enhancing motor recovery in stroke patients.

ECG 327
Narayanan Krishnamurthi
Asst Professor

Krishnamurthi's main research interests include developing therapeutic interventions to preserve function (mobility and quality of life) in aging population, improve/restore function with neurological disorders.

College of Nursing & Health Innovation (CONHI) 500 North 3rd Street, O: NHI-I, 378
Michael Kruer

The Kruer laboratory’s goal is to unravel the molecular and cellular mechanisms that lead to developmental and degenerative movement disorders of childhood in order to better diagnose and treat these disabling conditions.

Yang Kuang

Kuang is the author or co-author of over 190 refereed publications and 2 major textbooks in mathematical biology. He has done extensive work in developing data-based differential equation models in biology and medicine.

PS A429
Kenro Kusumi

Dean of natural sciences and professor in the School of Life Sciences in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Kusumi's research focuses on vertebrate genomics.

1100 S. McAllister Ave. Armstrong Hall, Suite 240
Joshua LaBaer
Executive Director & Professor

Dr. LaBaer is executive director of The Biodesign Institute as well as professor in the School of Molecular Sciences at ASU. His research interests include disease biomarker discovery and protein microarray technology.

Audrone Lapinaite
Assistant Professor

Audrone Lapinaite is an assistant professor at the School of Molecular Sciences and the Biodesign Institute's Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center at ASU.

Tsafrir Mor

Mor is a molecular biologist and biochemist whose research focuses on using plants to produce useful and therapeutic polypeptides, proteins and enzymes.

LSE 309
Kathryn Lemery

Lemery-Chalfant is dually trained in developmental psychology and behavior genetics.

PO Box 871104 Arizona State University
Juergen Liebig
Associate Professor

Liebig studies the organization, chemical communication, reproductive regulation, and behavioral and physiological plasticity of ants and termites with a focus on the colony, the individual, and the olfactory system.

ISTB1 306
Jonathan Lifshitz
Director and Associate Professor

Dr. Lifshitz's research questions primarily investigate traumatic brain injury as a disease process that dismantles, repairs and regenerates circuits in the brain.

Julie Liss

Julie Liss is associate dean of academic success in the College of Health Solutions and professor of Speech and Hearing Science. She studies the impact of neurological disease and other on speech, language and cognition.

COOR 3412
Ronald Lukas
Neuroscience Program Faculty

Dr Lukas's work focuses on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which are relevant to a number of neurological and other diseases, in addition to their roles in nicotine dependence and tobacco-related diseases.

Xin Luo
Assistant Professor

Xin Luo's research focuses on the basic mechanisms of pitch perception in acoustic and electric hearing to develop novel sound processing strategies that can enhance speech and music perception for cochlear implant users.

Marco Mangone
Associate Professor

Mangone is interested in study how eukaryotic RNA transcription is terminated and how the messenger RNA is regulated on its way to the expression into proteins, using the wound worm C. elegans as model system.

BDA 220F
Diego Mastroeni
Assoc Research Professor (FSC)

Dr. Mastroeni's current research is examining genetic ( Mom & Dad) and epigenetic (environmental) changes within single classes of cells in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease by laser capture microdissection (LCM).

Michael McBeath

McBeath's research interests include perception, baseball, audition and navigation.

PSYN 317
Grant McFadden
Center Director & Professor

Grant McFadden directs the Biodesign Center for Immunotherapy, Vaccines, and Virotherapy (B-CIVV) at ASU. The McFadden lab studies how poxviruses that cause immunosuppression interact with the host immune system.

Shwetal Mehta

Dr. Mehta's research is focused on the molecular biology and the signaling pathways driving glioma biology.

Ivy Brain Tumor Center 2910 N 3rd Ave.
Zaman Mirzadeh
Neuroscience Program Faculty

Dr. Mirzadeh’s research interests include Type 2 diabetes, central nervous system control of glucose homeostasis and energy balance, and pain modulation in the spinal cord dorsal horn.

Jitendran Muthuswamy

Muthuswamy's expertise centers on Micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) for Neural communication multi-functional Neural Prosthesis using MEMS.

ISTB1 181A
Jose Nanez
President's Professor

Náñez conducts research in visual perceptual learning, neural plasticity and malleability, and cognition. He also studies cognitive processes in Spanish-English bilinguals.

Janet Neisewander

Neisewander's research contributes to understanding the development and treatment of drug addiction and provides new knowledge of mechanisms involved in emotional processing, and learning and memory.

School of LIfe Sciences ISTB1 room 427
Jason Newbern
Associate Professor

Dr. Newbern's research is centered on developmental neuroscience. His laboratory studies the biochemical mechanisms that direct the formation of the brain and spinal cord.

Office: ISTB1 426 Lab: ISTB1 477BA-CA
M. Foster Olive
Associate Professor

Dr. Olive 's group is interested in examining how abused drugs affect the brain on a neurobiological level.

Beate Peter
Assistant Professor

Peter studies the genetic etiologies of disorders of spoken and written language. Her work contributes to the foundations for early identification of children at genetic risk and for proactive interventions.

Stephen Pratt

Pratt studies the emergence of complex behavior in leaderless groups, especially social insects. He works with engineers to translate lessons from biology to artificial systems, and to develop new tools to analyze behavior.

ISTB1 304
Christopher Quarles
Neuroscience Program Faculty

Dr. Quarles’s research group pursues and leverages advances in imaging technology, contrast mechanisms, and contrast agents to develop targeted bioimaging methods that are specifically sensitive to a tissue’s ...

Corianne Rogalsky
Associate Professor

Rogalsky studies the neurobiology of language and cognition, and how they change after a brain injury (e.g. stroke). Methodologies include neuroimaging, neuropsychology, and translational collaborations with clinicians.

Jason Robert
Associate Professor

Jason Robert is Dean's Distinguished (Associate) Professor in the Life Sciences.

School of Life Sciences PO Box 874501
Federico Sanabria
Assoc Professor

Sanabria studies basic behavioral and cognitive processes underlying behavioral regulation in various species, and applies this research to the study of psychiatric disorders.

Marco Santello

Santello is the director of the Neural Control of Movement Laboratory. Work in this laboratory focuses on understanding the control of complex movements.

ECG 334C
Rita Sattler

Sattler received her PhD from the University of Toronto, Canada. Her research focuses on studies of neurodegeneration in ALS and FTD using human patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells as a disease model.

Michael Shafer
Center Director & Professor

Shafer's research interests include the effectiveness of telemedicine in training substance abuse counselors and the effectiveness of mental health courts.

340 N. Commerce Park Loop, Suite 250
Douglas Shepherd
Asst Professor

Shepherd directs the Quantitative Imaging and Inference (QI2) lab. The QI2 lab works at the interface of advanced imaging, single-molecule biophysics, image analysis, genetic regulation and developmental biology.

Michael Sierks

Sierks research interests include antibody based therapeutics for treating neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzeimer's and Parkinson's Diseases.

GWC 536
Brian Smith
Trustees of ASU Professor

Smith is a behavioral neuroscientist studying learning and memory systems in both insects and mammals. His work is being applied to studies of human diseases, such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

ISTB-1 rm 322
Noah Snyder-Mackler
Assistant Professor

Snyder-Mackler's research sits at the nexus of the social environment and the genome.

427 East Tyler Mall LSC 214
Sarah Stabenfeldt
Asst Professor

Stabenfeldt leads her research team in developing regenerative medicine strategies for acute neural injury. Her expertise areas include regenerative medicine, targeted theranostics and neurotrauma.

ISTB1 281E
YiYuan Tang

Tang directs Health Neuroscience Collaboratory. His research focuses on neuroscience of cognitive, physical & mental health and behavior change across lifespan using neuroimaging, physiological, psychosocial, genetic methods.

William Tyler
Assoc Professor

Tyler's primary research and development interests focus on developing and applying noninvasive neuromodulation methods and devices intended to optimize human performance and brain health.

ECG 334
Kendall Van Keuren-Jensen

Our lab examines the RNA cargo of extracellular vesicles using several different sequencing platforms (Illumina, Oxford Nanopore, 10x Genomics) and a diverse set of bioinformatics tools for analysis.

Ramon Velazquez
Assistant Professor

Velazquez's research interests include identifying novel therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative disorders such as Down Syndrome, Alzheimer's disease and the tauopathies.

Brent Vernon

Vernon's research utilizes the principles of polymer science and chemistry to design and develop in situ gelling materials for drug delivery, tissue engineering and tissue reconstruction.

ISTB1 281H
Xuan Wang
Associate Professor

Wang is an applied microbiologist, working at the interface between microbial genetics and metabolic engineering to develop new microbial production processes.

Office 499E Biodesign C 1001 S. McAllister
Yalin Wang
Assocociate Professor

Wang's research interests include computer vision, medical imaging, machine learning, computer graphics, geometric modeling, and statistical pattern recognition.

Paul Whiteaker
Neuroscience Program Faculty

Professor, Neurobiology for Barrow Neurological Institute.

Jeanne Wilcox
Assoc Dean & Professor/

Professor M. Jeanne Wilcox established the Infant Child Research Laboratory Programs which are focused on developing and testing interventions to improve young children’s learning and developmental outcomes.

Payne 214C 1000 S. Forest Mall
William Yost
Research Professor (FSC)

Yost studies auditory perception, i.e., hearing in humans with normal and impaired hearing and in animals.

Yi Zhou
Assistant Professor

Zhou's research focuses on the neural basis of hearing, in particular, the tasks related to sound localization and sound identification in multi-talker environments.

Speech & Hearing Sci. - ASU PO BOX 87010
Assistant Professor

The Barthel laboratory is located at the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) in downtown Phoenix and studies telomere dysfunction and genetic instability in brain cancer (glioma) development and evolution. The lab specializes in the generation and analysis of high-throughput sequencing data (including genome sequencing and single-cell genomics) in model systems and patient samples. To find out more visit The Barthel Laboratory website.


Dr. Bowser is an internationally-recognized leader in ALS research. He has contributed to pioneering efforts to discover and validate biomarkers for ALS. These biomarkers can be useful as diagnostic indicators of disease, predictors of disease progression, and also in determining the effectiveness of drugs in clinical trials. Dr. Bowser has extensive experience in the translation of basic science discoveries to the clinic to impact patient care.

Barrow Neurological Institute
Associate Professor

Dr. Dortch’s research interests include developing, optimizing, and validating quantitative MRI methods for the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. He aims to apply these methods in patient populations to guide surgery, improve diagnostics, expand our understanding of disease progression, and serve as biomarkers of therapeutic response.

Barrow Neurological Institute
Assistant Professor

My research program integrates a wide range of molecular and behavioral approaches. Currently, we are evaluating the role of SIRT1 and its downstream targets as potential new candidates for the treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders by performing chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by genome-wide profiling (ChIP-seq) in nucleus accumbens (NAc) tissue from control and socially defeated stressed mice.

University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix
Associate Professor

The Gallitano Lab investigates the molecular mechanisms underlying the dual genetic and environmental risk for neuropsychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia and mood disorders. We focus on immediate early genes that are activated in the brain by environmental stimuli, including stress, and regulate processes disrupted in mental illnesses. Ongoing studies examine how Egr3 regulates effectors including Arc and the serotonin 2A receptor to influence synaptic plasticity, memory, and behavior.

University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix

My laboratory studies plasticity and neural adaptation in mesocorticolimbic systems. We have focused on the nucleus accumbens (NAc) due to its involvement in addiction and certain symptoms of schizophrenia (i.e., sensorimotor gating deficits), but we are currently developing strategies for elucidating caudate dysfunction which may afford a more unified model of etiology in schizophrenia. This work is interdisciplinary, involving cellular and molecular neurobiology and neuropsychopharmacology, and translational by nature, permitting the extension of our basic research findings into potential therapies for neuropsychiatric disorders.

University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix

Dr. Lawton’s research studies the formation, underlying genetics, and rupture of brain AVMs, as well as the hemodynamics, rupture, and computational modeling of brain aneurysms. His clinical research studies the anatomy of microsurgical approaches and clinical outcomes of microsurgery for aneurysms, AVMs, and bypass surgery. 

Barrow Neurological Institute
Associate Professor

Dr. Manfredsson’s research is to better understand the role of the protein alpha-synuclein in both healthy cells and those affected by Parkinson’s disease. His research also emphasizes understanding the symptomology of the disease, with a focus on the treatment of levodopa-induced dyskinesia and nonmotor symptoms experienced by nearly all patients with Parkinson’s disease.

Barrow Neurological Institute

Dr. Mufson’s research includes trophic factors in aging and Alzheimer’s disease, central cholinergic systems in Alzheimer’s disease, and neuroanatomy of cortical and limbic areas in primate brain.

Barrow Neurological Institute

Dr. Oh’s research interests include identifying cellular mechanisms responsible for cerebrovascular disorders and assessing novel therapies to treat these disorders.

Barrow Neurological Institute
Associate Professor

The overall interest of Dr. Shenfeng Qiu's lab is to understand the brain origins of neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism spectrum disorders. One ongoing project focuses on the role of MET tyrosine kinase, identified as a major risk for autism. Our lab aims to identify mechanisms by which MET affects neuronal growth, maturation and brain circuit function. We are also interested in the UBE3A protein in Angelman syndrome. Together with Ferguson lab, we also explore distinct brain circuits mediating anxiety and depression.

University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix
Research Assistant Professor

Dr. Rangasamy utilizes the mouse, zebrafish, and human iPSC-derived neuronal models to understand the molecular and cellular basis of neurogenetic disorders. Additionally, his research is also focused on identifying disease-specific cellular phenotype for the development of high-throughput (HTS) screening assay to identify novel therapies.

Translational Genomics Research Institute
Assistant Professor

Dr. Stokes’ research focuses on developing, validating, and translating advanced magnetic resonance image acquisition and analysis methods to noninvasively assess neurological diseases and disorders. She has applied these advanced imaging methods to probe key neuropathological changes in Alzheimer’s disease and other memory disorders, multiple sclerosis, and brain tumors.

Barrow Neurological Institute
Associate Professor

Dr. Currier Thomas’s primary research interests focus on traumatic brain injury (TBI). She studies structural, functional and molecular processes, with synaptogenesis as a keystone, which guide circuit reorganization over time and contribute to chronic deficits/symptoms after TBI. She tests pharmacological and rehabilitative strategies to mitigate these chronic deficits. She is also actively investigating the contribution of endocrine (hormone) deficiencies after TBI to understand causes and propose treatments for post-traumatic neurological deficits.

University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix

Dr. Waters’ research studies include genetic mechanisms of stroke, neuroprotection in stroke, multiple clinical trials investigating stroke treatments, and neurogenetic mechanisms of neuroplasticity.

Barrow Neurological Institute