Vibrant, Interactive, & Inclusive Department.Investigating key physiology and neurobiology questions using diverse approaches

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Department of
Physiology and Neurobiology

We carry out research and education that is innovative, collaborative, and centered on cutting-edge science. We bring together researchers and educators focused on the molecular, cellular, and circuit-based mechanisms that underlie diverse functions orchestrated by the brain and body. By integrating work across the spectrum of Physiology and Neurobiology, we aim to advance our understanding of brain-body functions and interactions under normal conditions and disease. 

Our department is home to nationally recognized researchers in neuroscience, physiology, and education.

News @ PNB

Akiko Nishiyama

Dr. Akiko Nishiyama

Physiology and Neurobiology Logo

A Message From The Department Head

'Welcome to the Department of Physiology and Neurobiology (PNB) website at the University of Connecticut. PNB, formerly the Physiology section of the Department of Biological Sciences, was established as a department in 1986. Today, PNB is one of the twenty-five departments in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. We are a vibrant, collegial, interactive, and inclusive department, housed in the Pharmacy/Biology and Torrey Life Science Buildings on the UConn Storrs main campus.

PNB is the home to twenty-two faculty members with diverse cultural and educational background who are investigating fundamental physiology and neurobiology questions using a variety of approaches. Research areas include neurobiology, reproductive biology, development, RNA processing, and human disease models, as well as research on STEM education. We also oversee the Bioscience Electron Microscopy Laboratory, which provides service and training to users across the Storrs campus.'

A Message From The Department Head

Akiko Nishiyama

Dr. Akiko Nishiyama

'Welcome to the Department of Physiology and Neurobiology (PNB) website at the University of Connecticut. PNB, formerly the Physiology section of the Department of Biological Sciences, was established as a department in 1986. Today, PNB is one of the twenty-five departments in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. We are a vibrant, collegial, interactive, and inclusive department, housed in the Pharmacy/Biology and Torrey Life Science Buildings on the UConn Storrs main campus.'

READ FULL MESSAGE PNB Logo

Boundless Research

Boundless Research

Recent Publications

MiR-200c-3p targets SESN1 and represses the IL-6/AKT loop to prevent cholangiocyte activation and cholestatic liver fibrosis

Song Y, Tran M, Wang L, Shin DJ, Wu J.

Lab Invest. 2021 Dec 8. doi: 10.1038/s41374-021-00710-6. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34880414.

Muscarinic signaling regulates voltage-gated potassium channel KCNQ2 phosphorylation in the nucleus accumbens via protein kinase C for aversive learning

Faruk MO, Tsuboi D, Yamahashi Y, Funahashi Y, Lin YH, Ahammad RU, Hossen E, Amano M, Nishioka T, Tzingounis AV, Yamada K, Nagai T, Kaibuchi K

J Neurochem. 2022 Feb;160(3):325-341. doi: 10.1111/jnc.15555. Epub 2021 Dec 18

Ir76b is a Co-receptor for Amine Responses in Drosophila Olfactory Neurons

Vulpe A, Menuz K.

Front Cell Neurosci. 2021 Nov 17;15:759238. doi: 10.3389/fncel.2021.759238.

Shaping of Regional Differences in Oligodendrocyte Dynamics by Regional Heterogeneity of the Pericellular Microenvironment

Sherafat A, Pfeiffer F, Nishiyama A.

Front Cell Neurosci. 2021 Oct 8;15:721376. doi:10.3389/fncel.2021.721376

Identification and characterization of CYPs induced in the Drosophila antenna by exposure to a plant odorant

Baldwin SR, Mohapatra P, Nagalla M, Sindvani R, Amaya D, Dickson HA, Menuz K.

Sci Rep. 2021 Oct 15;11(1):20530. doi:10.1038/s41598-021-99910-9

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Department of Physiology and Neurobiology seeks to provide a nurturing environment for all students. As a department, we are committed to cultivating an inclusive community for instruction, research, and outreach activities congruent with the mission of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the University.

Departmental Newsletter

Members of our department are making the latest advancements in science and education and obtaining competitive grants and awards. Check out our newsletter where we highlight members of our community and the latest PNB news!

Undergraduate Program

Our goal is to prepare our students for diverse careers in research, medicine, biotechnology, government, and many other fields. Undergraduate students in PNB courses are trained to think critically about classic and emerging challenges in the field, as well as a diverse range of tools to take them on.

Graduate Program

Our department currently has about 40 graduate students. We offer a Ph.D. program, and M.S. programs that are either thesis or coursework. Our graduate program focuses on the development of technical skills, critical thinking, and effective scientific communication. Our faculty are well funded and work closely with students to engage in cutting-edge research. In addition to these advanced degrees in Physiology and Neurobiology, our department offers a one-year M.S. program in Surgical Neurophysiology for students who are interested in intraoperative neuromonitoring (IONM).

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Cellular Diagram