PiN Faculty Member - Amar Sahay, PhD

Amar Sahay, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry

Massachusetts General Hospital
Center for Regenerative Medicine, Harvard Stem Cell Institute
185 Cambridge Street, CPZN-Room 4242
Boston, MA 02114
Tel: 617-643-4371
Fax: 617-724-2662
Visit my lab page here.

The incidence and complexity of mental illnesses and cognitive impairments associated with aging and Alzheimer’s disease underscores the need to develop novel treatments.  Our mission is to generate fundamental insights into the contributions of circuit- and plasticity mechanisms in the dentate gyrus (DG)-CA3 circuit  in hippocampal  memory processing and modulation of mood.  By integrating cellular, circuit, systems and behavioral interrogation of DG-CA3 functions and adult hippocampal neurogenesis, we aspire to rejuvenate and re-engineer hippocampal circuitry to optimize circuit performance and memory processing.  We predict that this strategy  will impact  diseases such as PTSD, Alzheimer’s disease and age-related cognitive decline.  

To address this goal, we have established a multifaceted research program that integrates inducible mouse- and viral-genetics, pharmaco- and optogenetics, synaptic tracing, in vivo awake behaving optical imaging, 2 photon imaging, human cellular reprogramming, and behavioral analysis. Specifically, we are interested in the following questions.

1. How are neural stem cell activation-quiescence decisions physiologically regulated?

2. What are the mechanisms underlying lineage homeostasis and experience dependent integration of adult-born neurons?

3. How do properties and connectivity of dentate granule cells causally relate to their encoding and memory functions?

4. How do DG-CA3 computations influence cortical and subcortical circuits subserving memory and mood? 

 5. How do our studies on properties and connectivity of adult-born neurons in rodents inform our thinking of the human brain in health and disease?

6. What are the molecular mechanisms operational in the hippocampus underlying resilience and vulnerability to stress?

Last Update: 3/7/2018


For a complete listing of publications click here.



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