Kavli Institute for Brain and Mind
The Salk Institute and University of California, San Diego
Sreekanth Chalasani is an Associate Professor in the Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory at The Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, CA with an adjunct appointment at the University of California, San Diego. Him and his colleagues use the nematode C. elegans and two vertebrate models D. rerio and M. musculus to dissect how the nervous system transforms environmental changes into appropriate behavioral outputs. Additionally, they are pioneering the development of a novel technology to manipulate neurons and non-neuronal cells non-invasively. Termed “Sonogenetics”, this method uses ultrasound as the trigger to control target cells expressing mechanosensitive proteins. They have successfully used this method to affect neurons within the nematode and the rodent brain and spinal cord. This non-invasive platform has the potential to not only reveal insights into brain function, but also develop therapies for multiple human conditions including Parkinson’s and others.