Dr. Khakh will be presenting his talk in person at Gunn Rotunda. We welcome you to join us at 11:30 am for coffee, cookies and conversation before the seminar.
The talk will also be live-streamed via Zoom
Baljit Khakh, PhD
Department of Physiology
University of California, Los Angeles
Astrocytes tile the entire central nervous system, but their functions in neural circuits and their roles in mammalian behaviour and disease are incompletely defined. I will report data from my laboratory whereby we used state-of-the-art methods and new genetic approaches to reduce and activate striatal astrocyte signaling in vivo. Our data show that brain area specific astrocytes regulate neural circuits to shape behaviour and also contribute to phenotypes associated with psychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases.
Baljit Khakh completed his Ph.D. at the University of Cambridge in the laboratory of Patrick PA Humphrey. He completed postdoctoral fellowships in the laboratory of Graeme Henderson at the University of Bristol, and then in the laboratory of Henry A. Lester and Norman Davidson at California Institute of Technology. In 2001, Khakh became Group Leader at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, and in 2006 he moved to the University of California, Los Angeles where he is Professor of Physiology and Neurobiology. Khakh’s work has been recognized, including with the NIH Director's Pioneer Award, the Paul G. Allen Distinguished Investigator Award, and the Outstanding Investigator Award (R35) from NINDS.
 Nagai, J., Rajbhandari, A. K., Gangwani, M. R., Hachisuka, A., Coppola, G., Masmanidis, S. C., Fanselow, M. S., & Khakh, B. S. (2019). Hyperactivity with disrupted attention by activation of an astrocyte synaptogenic cue. Cell, 177(5). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2019.03.019
 Yu, X., Nagai, J., Marti-Solano, M., Soto, J. S., Coppola, G., Babu, M. M., & Khakh, B. S. (2020). Context-specific striatal astrocyte molecular responses are phenotypically exploitable. Neuron, 108(6). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuron.2020.09.021