David D. Ginty, Ph.D.


David D. Ginty, Ph.D.
Edward R. and Anne G. Lefler Professor of Neurobiology; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Harvard Medical School
220 Longwood Avenue
Armenise Building, Room 435
City, State, ZIP
Boston, MA 02166
(617) 432-2175
[email protected]
Research field
Award year


Research in my laboratory is focused on the development, organization, and function of neural circuits that underlie the perception of touch and pain. My laboratory has generated a range of mouse genetic tools that enable interrogation of physiologically distinct classes of low-threshold mechanosensory neurons (LTMRs), which are the primary cutaneous sensory neurons that mediate our sense of touch. My laboratory has also developed a complementary set of mouse genetic tools to investigate the spinal cord interneuron and projection neuron subtypes that integrate and propagate touch and pain information within the central nervous system. This array of somatosensory nervous system genetic tools has enabled visualization, targeted in vitro and in vivo electrophysiological recordings, and functional manipulation of LTMRs and nociceptors as well as the spinal cord and brainstem circuit they engage.

My lab has used these mouse genetic tools and a multidisciplinary approach to define: 1) molecular and morphological bases of LTMR subtype response properties; 2) mechanisms of LTMR and nociceptor development; 3) the organizational logic of LTMR circuits and a conceptual framework for understanding how ensembles of LTMR activities are integrated and processed within the spinal cord and brainstem; and 4) the causes and consequences of tactile processing deficits in autism spectrum disorders and chronic pain states.


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