Navigation Links
The first HFSP Nakasone award goes to Karl Deisseroth of Stanford University
Date:4/8/2010

The Human Frontier Science Program Organization (HFSPO) is pleased to announce that the first HFSP Nakasone Award has been conferred upon Karl Deisseroth of Stanford University for his pioneering work on the development and application of optogenetic techniques for the study of the relationship between neural circuits and behaviour. The HFSP Nakasone Award has been established to honour scientists who have made key breakthroughs in fields at the forefront of the life sciences. It recognizes the vision of former Prime Minister Nakasone of Japan in the creation of the Human Frontier Science Program. The recipient will give the first HFSP Nakasone Lecture at the annual meeting of HFSP awardees to be held in Kerala, India in November 2010.

A major challenge in neuroscience is to understand the cellular mechanisms underlying neural circuits responsible for behaviours. Approaches from pharmacology and electrophysiology have made major contributions to our understanding of the chemical and electrical basis of neural activity, but have not allowed the manipulation of specific classes of nerve cells in defined anatomical areas. Karl Deisseroth's contribution has been to engineer neurons of defined specificity in a way that makes them sensitive to light, and to use light as a stimulus to activate or inhibit their activity.

His approach builds on studies of microbial opsins (genes that encode light-activated ion channels and pumps called bacteriorhodopsins, halorhodopsins, and channelrhodopsins), ranging from work by Walter Stoeckenius and Dieter Oesterhelt in 1971 to work by Peter Hegemann and Georg Nagel in 2002, on the microbial biology and biophysics of these proteins. In a paper published in 2005, Karl Deisseroth, the principal investigator of a team at Stanford that included graduate students Ed Boyden and Feng Zhang, took the gene for one of these microbial opsins and inserted it into a virus that was then used to insert the genes into nerve cells in cell culture. The cells could be stimulated with blue light with millisecond time resolution, thus allowing for the first time optical activation of nerve cells at physiological time scales. Using the power of genetics to create different modified viral vectors, Karl Deisseroth has been able to apply this approach in living animals to make defined sets of neurons sensitive to light, even in deep brain structures of mammals. He has also developed sophisticated optical fibre technologies to allow both the optical stimulation and recording of neuronal activity together with behavioural observation. Finally, he has led the molecular engineering of microbial opsins for new classes of function, and the application of these new tools to study neural circuit function in health and disease. This combination of genetics with optics has been dubbed "Optogenetics". Karl Deisseroth has made this technology freely available and it is now being used by hundreds of laboratories throughout the world.

Karl Deisseroth holds joint appointments as Associate Professor of Bioengineering and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University. His pioneering work has been recognised by many prestigious awards, including from the Society for Neuroscience for his development of optogenetics, and from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.


'/>"/>

Contact: Martin Reddington
mreddington@hfsp.org
33-388-215-124
Human Frontier Science Program
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Which came first, the moth or the cactus?
2. First all-African GM crop is resistant to maize streak virus
3. Scientists retrace evolution with first atomic structure of an ancient protein
4. CU-Boulder team discovers first ancient manioc fields in Americas
5. First finding of a metabolite in 1 sex only
6. First orchid fossil puts showy blooms at some 80 million years old
7. First individual genome sequence published
8. U of M begins nations first clinical trial using T-reg cells from cord blood in leukemia treatment
9. UNH becomes first university in nation to use landfill gas as primary energy source
10. Scientists in first global study of poison gas in the atmosphere
11. Weight gain between first and second pregnancies associated with increased odds of male second child
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/24/2017)... , March 24, 2017 The Controller General of ... Mr. Abdulla Algeen have received the prestigious international IAIR Award ... Continue Reading ... ... and Deputy Controller Abdulla Algeen (small picture on the right) have received ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... VILNIUS, Lithuania , March 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... identification and object recognition technologies, today announced the ... development kit (SDK), which provides improved facial recognition ... safety cameras on a single computer. The new ... algorithms to improve accuracy, and it utilizes a ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... ALLENTOWN, Pa. , March 20, 2017 ... PD 2.0 personal spirometer and Wellness Management System (WMS), ... Founded in 2010, PMD Healthcare is a ... Company with a mission dedicated to creating innovative solutions ... of life. With that intent focus, PMD developed the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... ... dedicated to finding cures for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), and ReachMD , ... deliver exclusive content to ReachMD learners. , The partnership, which launched in ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... , March 29, 2017 QIAGEN N.V. (NASDAQ: ... today announced the U.S. launch of its ipsogen ® JAK2 ... U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a qualitative in vitro diagnostic test for ... whole blood.* ... assay is processed on QIAGEN,s Rotor-Gene ® Q MDx system, which is ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... March 29, 2017 WuXi Biologics, a ... dedicated to biologics and a WuXi AppTec Affiliate, ... Asia-Pacific Best Bioprocessing Excellence Award from IMAPAC, a ... Awards aims to recognize outstanding leaders and trend-setters ... top bioprocessing and biomanufacturing experts in the industry, ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... 2017 , ... ComplianceOnline, the leading governance, risk and compliance advisory network with ... Summit 2017 venue and speaker lineup. The Summit will take place on June 8 ... Omni Parker House Hotel, which is located at 60 School Street, Boston, MA will ...
Breaking Biology Technology: