X.Z. Shawn Xu, Ph.D.

Title
Professor
Department
Life Sciences
Institution
University of Michigan
Address
Life Sciences Institute, Room 6115A
210 Washtenaw Avenue
City, State, Zip
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2216
Phone
(734) 615-9311
E-mail
shawnxu[at]umich.edu
Website
http://www.lsi.umich.edu/facultyresearch/labs/xz-xu
Research Field
Neuroscience
Award Year
2007

Research

A fundamental question in neurobiology concerns how the nervous system and genes generate behavior. The complexity of the mammalian nervous systems poses an immense challenge to address this question in mammals. We thus take a reductionist approach by focusing on the nematode C. elegans, a genetic model organism with a small but very well characterized nervous system. Specifically, we are interested in understanding how sensory inputs are perceived by the nervous system, how neural circuits process information to generate behavior, and how genes and drugs of abuse regulate these processes. To do so, we take a multidisciplinary approach combining molecular genetics, behavioral analysis, functional imaging, and electrophysiology.