Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute


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  • Wing Hung Wong

    Wing Hung Wong

    Stephen R. Pierce Family Goldman Sachs Professor of Science and Human Health and Professor of Biomedical Data Science

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsCurrent interest centers on the application of statistics to biology and medicine. We are particularly interested in questions concerning gene regulation, genome interpretation and their applications to precision medicine.

  • Albert Y. Wu, MD, PhD, FACS

    Albert Y. Wu, MD, PhD, FACS

    Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy translational research focuses on using autologous stem cells to recreate a patient’s ocular tissues for potential transplantation. We are generating tissue from induced pluripotent stem cells to treat limbal stem cell deficiency in patients who are bilaterally blind. By applying my background in molecular and cellular biology, stem cell biology, oculoplastic surgery, I hope to make regenerative medicine a reality for those suffering from orbital and ocular disease.

  • Hsi-Yang Wu

    Hsi-Yang Wu

    Member, Bio-X

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsI am interested in how the brain matures to control the bladder and external sphincter to achieve urinary continence. Using functional MRI of the brain, we are investigating if certain patterns of activity will predict which children will respond to therapy for incontinence.

  • Jiajun Wu

    Jiajun Wu

    Assistant Professor of Computer Science

    BioJiajun Wu is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University, working on computer vision, machine learning, and computational cognitive science. Before joining Stanford, he was a Visiting Faculty Researcher at Google Research. He received his PhD in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Wu's research has been recognized through the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award Honorable Mention, the AAAI/ACM SIGAI Doctoral Dissertation Award, the MIT George M. Sprowls PhD Thesis Award in Artificial Intelligence and Decision-Making, the 2020 Samsung AI Researcher of the Year, the IROS Best Paper Award on Cognitive Robotics, and faculty research awards and graduate fellowships from Samsung, Amazon, Meta, Nvidia, and Adobe.

  • Courtney Wusthoff, MD

    Courtney Wusthoff, MD

    Associate Professor of Neurology and, by courtesy, of Pediatrics (Neonatology)

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy projects focus on clinical research in newborns with, or at risk, for brain injury. I use EEG in at-risk neonates to better understand the underlying pathophysiology of risk factors that may lead to worse outcomes. I am particularly interested in neonatal seizures and how they may exacerbate perinatal brain injury with a goal to identify treatments that might protect the vulnerable brain. I am also interested in EEG in other pediatric populations, as well as medical ethics and global health.

  • Joanna Wysocka

    Joanna Wysocka

    Lorry Lokey Professor and Professor of Developmental Biology

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe precise and robust regulation of gene expression is a cornerstone for complex biological life. Research in our laboratory is focused on understanding how regulatory information encoded by the genome is integrated with the transcriptional machinery and chromatin context to allow for emergence of form and function during human embryogenesis and evolution, and how perturbations in this process lead to disease.

  • Tony Wyss-Coray, PhD

    Tony Wyss-Coray, PhD

    D. H. Chen Professor II

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsUse of genetic and molecular tools to dissect immune and inflammatory pathways in Alzheimer's and neurodegeneration.

  • Lei Xing

    Lei Xing

    Jacob Haimson and Sarah S. Donaldson Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Electrical Engineering

    Current Research and Scholarly Interestsartificial intelligence in medicine, medical imaging, Image-guided intervention, molecular imaging, biology guided radiation therapy (BGRT), treatment plan optimization

  • Daniel Yamins

    Daniel Yamins

    Assistant Professor of Psychology and of Computer Science

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur lab's research lies at intersection of neuroscience, artificial intelligence, psychology and large-scale data analysis. It is founded on two mutually reinforcing hypotheses:

    H1. By studying how the brain solves computational challenges, we can learn to build better artificial intelligence algorithms.

    H2. Through improving artificial intelligence algorithms, we'll discover better models of how the brain works.

    We investigate these hypotheses using techniques from computational modeling and artificial intelligence, high-throughput neurophysiology, functional brain imaging, behavioral psychophysics, and large-scale data analysis.

  • Fan Yang

    Fan Yang

    Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and of Bioengineering

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur research seeks to understand how microenvironmental cues regulate stem cell fate, and to develop novel biomaterials and stem cell-based therapeutics for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Our work spans from fundamental science, technology development, to translational research.We are particularly interested in developing better therapies for treating musculoskeletal diseases, cardiovascular diseases and cancer.

  • Yanmin Yang

    Yanmin Yang

    Associate Professor of Neurology

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsElucidate biological functions of cytoskeletal associated proteins in neurons. Define the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration in null mice.

  • Yunzhi Peter Yang

    Yunzhi Peter Yang

    Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and, by courtesy, of Materials Science and Engineering and of Bioengineering

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsYang’ lab's research interests are in the areas of bio-inspired biomaterials, medical devices, and 3D printing approaches for re-creating a suitable microenvironment for cell growth and tissue regeneration for musculoskeletal disease diagnosis and treatment, including multiple tissue healing such as rotator cuff injury, orthopedic diseases such as osteoporosis and osteonecrosis, and orthopedic traumas such as massive bone and muscle injuries.

  • Jason Yeatman

    Jason Yeatman

    Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics), of Education and of Psychology

    BioDr. Jason Yeatman is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of Education and Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics at Stanford University. Dr. Yeatman completed his PhD in Psychology at Stanford where he studied the neurobiology of literacy and developed new brain imaging methods for studying the relationship between brain plasticity and learning. After finishing his PhD, he took a faculty position at the University of Washington’s Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences before returning to Stanford.

    As the director of the Brain Development and Education Lab, the overarching goal of his research is to understand the mechanisms that underlie the process of learning to read, how these mechanisms differ in children with dyslexia, and to design literacy intervention programs that are effective across the wide spectrum of learning differences. His lab employs a collection of structural and functional neuroimaging measurements to study how a child’s experience with reading instruction shapes the development of brain circuits that are specialized for this unique cognitive function.

  • David C. Yeomans

    David C. Yeomans

    Associate Professor of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsPhysiology of different pain types; Biomarkers of pain and inflammation; Gene Therapy for Pain

  • Jerome Yesavage

    Jerome Yesavage

    Jared and Mae Tinklenberg Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Neurology

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsWe study cognitive processes and aging in our research center. Studies range from molecular biology to neuropsychology of cognitive processes.

  • Serena Yeung

    Serena Yeung

    Assistant Professor of Biomedical Data Science and, by courtesy, of Computer Science and of Electrical Engineering

    BioDr. Serena Yeung is an Assistant Professor of Biomedical Data Science and, by courtesy, of Computer Science and of Electrical Engineering at Stanford University. Her research focus is on developing artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms to enable new capabilities in biomedicine and healthcare. She has extensive expertise in deep learning and computer vision, and has developed computer vision algorithms for analyzing diverse types of visual data ranging from video capture of human behavior, to medical images and cell microscopy images.

    Dr. Yeung leads the Medical AI and Computer Vision Lab at Stanford. She is affiliated with the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, the Clinical Excellence Research Center, the Center for Artificial Intelligence in Medicine & Imaging, the Center for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, and Bio-X. She also serves on the NIH Advisory Committee to the Director Working Group on Artificial Intelligence.

  • Jong H. Yoon

    Jong H. Yoon

    Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (Public Mental Health & Population Sciences)

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy research seeks to discover the brain mechanisms responsible for schizophrenia and to translate this knowledge into the clinic to improve how we diagnose and treat this condition. Towards these ends, our group has been developing cutting-edge neuroimaging tools to identify neurobiological abnormalities and test novel systems-level disease models of psychosis and schizophrenia directly in individuals with these conditions.

    We have been particularly interested in the role of neocortical-basal ganglia circuit dysfunction. A working hypothesis is that some of the core symptoms of schizophrenia are attributable to impairments in neocortical function that results in disconnectivity with components of the basal ganglia and dysregulation of their activity. The Yoon Lab has developed new high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging methods to more precisely measure the function of basal ganglia components, which given their small size and location deep within the brain has been challenging. This includes ways to measure the activity of nuclei that store and control the release of dopamine throughout the brain, a neurochemical that is one of the most important factors in the production of psychosis in schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric conditions.

  • Greg Zaharchuk

    Greg Zaharchuk

    Professor of Radiology (Neuroimaging and Neurointervention)

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsImproving medical image quality using deep learning artificial intelligence
    Imaging of cerebral hemodynamics with MRI and CT
    Noninvasive oxygenation measurement with MRI
    Clinical imaging of cerebrovascular disease
    Imaging of cervical artery dissection
    MR/PET in Neuroradiology
    Resting-state fMRI for perfusion imaging and stroke

  • Natalie M. Zahr

    Natalie M. Zahr

    Assistant Professor (Research) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (Major Laboratories)

    BioNatalie M. Zahr received a graduate education in the basic sciences including the study of neuro- pharmacology, physiology, and anatomy. After completing her graduate training in electrophysiology, she began a postdoctoral fellowship as a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scientist. Her work focuses on translational approaches using in vivo MR imaging and spectroscopy in studies of human with Alcohol Use Disorders (AUD) and in rodent models of alcohol exposure with the goal of identifying mechanisms of alcohol effects on the brain. Her human studies include participants with HIV, those co-morbid for HIV and AUD and recently, aging individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Her position allows her to explore emerging MR technologies and apply them to test relevant hypotheses. Before joining Stanford, she taught at several local institutions including UC Berkeley extension and Santa Clara University where she enjoyed sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm for learning with students.

  • Jamil Zaki

    Jamil Zaki

    Associate Professor of Psychology

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy research focuses on the cognitive and neural bases of social behavior, and in particular on how people respond to each other's emotions (empathy), why they conform to each other (social influence), and why they choose to help each other (prosociality).

  • Richard Zare

    Richard Zare

    Marguerite Blake Wilbur Professor of Natural Science and Professor, by courtesy, of Physics

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy research group is exploring a variety of topics that range from the basic understanding of chemical reaction dynamics to the nature of the chemical contents of single cells.

    Under thermal conditions nature seems to hide the details of how elementary reactions occur through a series of averages over reagent velocity, internal energy, impact parameter, and orientation. To discover the effects of these variables on reactivity, it is necessary to carry out studies of chemical reactions far from equilibrium in which the states of the reactants are more sharply restricted and can be varied in a controlled manner. My research group is attempting to meet this tough experimental challenge through a number of laser techniques that prepare reactants in specific quantum states and probe the quantum state distributions of the resulting products. It is our belief that such state-to-state information gives the deepest insight into the forces that operate in the breaking of old bonds and the making of new ones.

    Space does not permit a full description of these projects, and I earnestly invite correspondence. The following examples are representative:

    The simplest of all neutral bimolecular reactions is the exchange reaction H H2 -> H2 H. We are studying this system and various isotopic cousins using a tunable UV laser pulse to photodissociate HBr (DBr) and hence create fast H (D) atoms of known translational energy in the presence of H2 and/or D2 and using a laser multiphoton ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometer to detect the nascent molecular products in a quantum-state-specific manner by means of an imaging technique. It is expected that these product state distributions will provide a key test of the adequacy of various advanced theoretical schemes for modeling this reaction.

    Analytical efforts involve the use of capillary zone electrophoresis, two-step laser desorption laser multiphoton ionization mass spectrometry, cavity ring-down spectroscopy, and Hadamard transform time-of-flight mass spectrometry. We believe these methods can revolutionize trace analysis, particularly of biomolecules in cells.

  • Michael Zeineh

    Michael Zeineh

    Associate Professor of Radiology (Neuroimaging and Neurointervention)

    BioDr. Michael Zeineh began his journey into clinical neuroscience when he received a B.S. with Honors in Biology at Caltech in 1995. He next went to UCLA's M.D.-Ph.D. program, where he studied in the laboratory of Dr. Susan Bookheimer. His Ph.D. thesis examined memory formation using advanced hippocampal subfield functional MRI in normals as well as in aging. After an internal medicine internship also at UCLA, he went on to further study medical imaging by entering radiology residency at Stanford. Finding his enduring passion with neuroimaging, he pursued neuroradiology fellowship also at Stanford, and became faculty as of 2010. He spearheads many initiatives in advanced clinical imaging at Stanford. Simultaneously, he runs a lab with the goal of discovering new imaging abnormalities in neurodegenerative disorders, with a focus on the hippocampal formation using in vivo and ex vivo methods.

  • Jamie Zeitzer

    Jamie Zeitzer

    Professor (Research) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (Sleep Medicine)

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsDr. Zeitzer is a circadian physiologist specializing in the understanding of the impact of light on circadian rhythms and other aspects of non-image forming light perception.
    He examines the manner in which humans respond to light and ways to manipulate this responsiveness, with direct application to jet lag, shift work, and altered sleep timing in teens. Dr. Zeitzer has also pioneered the use of actigraphy in the determination of epiphenomenal markers of psychiatric disorders.

  • Heng Zhao

    Heng Zhao

    Member, Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy lab is focused on developing novel therapeutic methods against stroke using rodent models. We study protective effect of postconditioning, preconditioning and mild hypothermia. The rationale for studying three means of neuroprotection is that we may discover mechanisms that these treatments have in common. Conversely, if they have differing mechanisms, we will be able to offer more than one treatment for stroke and increase a patient’s chance for recovery.

  • Qingyu Zhao

    Qingyu Zhao

    Instructor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

    BioI am interested in using machine learning and computational approaches to analyze longitudinal and multi-modal MRI to characterize how the white-matter architecture develops to support coordinated neural activity for developing higher-order executive functions. My research also extends to characterize the impact of alcohol and substance use on structure-function remodeling. My general interest lies in image analysis and machine learning for the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases.

  • Renee Zhao

    Renee Zhao

    Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering and, by courtesy, of Materials Science and Engineering

    BioRuike Renee Zhao is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University where she directs the Soft Intelligent Materials Laboratory. Renee received her BS degree from Xi'an Jiaotong University in 2012, and her MS and PhD degrees from Brown University in 2014 and 2016, respectively. She was a postdoc associate at MIT during 2016-2018 prior to her appointment as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at The Ohio State University from 2018 to 2021.
    Renee’s research concerns the development of stimuli-responsive soft composites for multifunctional robotic systems with integrated shape-changing, assembling, sensing, and navigation. By combining mechanics, polymer engineering, and advanced material manufacturing techniques, the functional soft composites enable applications in soft robotics, miniaturized biomedical devices, flexible electronics, deployable and morphing structures.
    Renee is a recipient of the 2022 ASME Henry Hess Early Career Publication Award, 2022 ASME Pi Tau Sigma Gold Medal, 2021 ASME Applied Mechanics Division Journal of Applied Mechanics Award, 2020 NSF Career Award, and 2018 ASME Applied Mechanics Division Haythornthwaite Research Initiation Award.

  • Xiaolin Zheng

    Xiaolin Zheng

    Professor of Mechanical Engineering, of Energy Science Engineering, Senior Fellow at the Precourt Institute for Energy and Professor, by courtesy, of Materials Science and Engineering

    BioProfessor Zheng received her Ph.D. in Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University (2006), B.S. in Thermal Engineering from Tsinghua University (2000). Prior to joining Stanford in 2007, Professor Zheng did her postdoctoral work in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University. Professor Zheng is a member of MRS, ACS and combustion institute. Professor Zheng received the TR35 Award from the MIT Technology Review (2013), one of the 100 Leading Global Thinkers by the Foreign Policy Magazine (2013), 3M Nontenured Faculty Grant Award (2013), the Presidential Early Career Award (PECASE) from the white house (2009), Young Investigator Awards from the ONR (2008), DARPA (2008), Terman Fellowship from Stanford (2007), and Bernard Lewis Fellowship from the Combustion Institute (2004).

  • Roseanna N. Zia

    Roseanna N. Zia

    Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy lab unifies mesoscale physics and chemistry with cellular-level biology through novel theoretical modeling and large-scale computational simulations. We work in four areas: 1) constructing micro-continuum theory of complex fluids; 2) mechanistically explaining non-equilibrium phase transitions in colloidal systems; 3) modeling confined and large-scale hydrodynamically-interacting colloidal suspensions; and 4) modeling the physics of living cells.

  • James Zou

    James Zou

    Assistant Professor of Biomedical Data Science and, by courtesy, of Computer Science and of Electrical Engineering

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy group works on both foundations of statistical machine learning and applications in biomedicine and healthcare. We develop new technologies that make ML more accountable to humans, more reliable/robust and reveals core scientific insights.

    We want our ML to be impactful and beneficial, and as such, we are deeply motivated by transformative applications in biotech and health. We collaborate with and advise many academic and industry groups.

  • J. Bradley Zuchero

    J. Bradley Zuchero

    Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsGlia are a frontier of neuroscience, and overwhelming evidence from the last decade shows that they are essential regulators of all aspects of the nervous system. The Zuchero Lab aims to uncover how glial cells regulate neural development and how their dysfunction contributes to diseases like multiple sclerosis (MS) and in injuries like stroke.

    Although glia represent more than half of the cells in the human brain, fundamental questions remain to be answered. How do glia develop their highly specialized morphologies and interact with neurons to powerfully control form and function of the nervous system? How is this disrupted in neurodegenerative diseases and after injury? By bringing cutting-edge cell biology techniques to the study of glia, we aim to uncover how glia help sculpt and regulate the nervous system and test their potential as novel, untapped therapeutic targets for disease and injury.

    We are particularly interested in myelin, the insulating sheath around neuronal axons that is lost in diseases like MS. How do oligodendrocytes- the glial cell that produces myelin in the central nervous system- form and remodel myelin, and why do they fail to regenerate myelin in disease? Our current projects aim to use cell biology and neuroscience approaches to answer these fundamental questions. Ultimately we hope our work will lead to much-needed therapies to promote remyelination in patients.