Guoping Feng, PhD

Poitras Professor of Neuroscience
Associate Director, McGovern Institute for Brain Research
Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Director of Model Systems and Neurobiology
Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard

Lab Website:
Feng Laboratory
Dr. Feng

Dissecting Neurobiological Mechanisms of ASD: from genes to circuits

Recent genetic studies have identified a large number of candidate genes for autism spectrum disorder (ASD), many of which encode synaptic proteins, suggesting that synaptic dysfunction might be a key pathology in ASD. Using a variety of animal models, we have identified distinct synaptic and circuitry mechanisms related to repetitive behaviors, social interaction deficits, sensory abnormalities, attention deficit and sleep disruption. Combining single cell transcriptomic analysis and cell type-specific functional manipulation, we have begun to reveal circuit-specific targets for developing potential treatment for some of the debilitating symptoms. In additions, new genome editing technologies allow us to explore gene therapy as an effective treatment for monogenic ASD.     

Dr. Feng is the Poitras Chair Professor of Neuroscience in the McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is also an Institute Member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and the Director of Model Systems and Neurobiology at the Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research at Broad Institute. Dr. Feng’s research is devoted to understanding the mechanisms regulating the development and function of synapses in the brain and how synaptic dysfunction may contribute to psychiatric disorders.  Using genetically engineered animal models, Dr. Feng’s laboratory combines cutting-edge technologies and multidisciplinary approaches to unravel the neurobiological mechanisms of neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders.

Dr. Feng studied medicine at Zhejiang University School of Medicine in Hangzhou, China.  He did his PhD training with Linda Hall at the State University of New York at Buffalo and postdoctoral training with Joshua Sanes at Washington University in St. Louis.  Prior to joining the faculty at MIT, he was a faculty member in the Department of Neurobiology, Duke University School of Medicine. Dr. Feng has won numerous awards for his scientific achievement including Beckman Young Investigator Award, McKnight Neuroscience of Brain Disorders Award, Gill Young Investigator Award, Brain Research Foundation Science Innovation Award, Hartwell Individual Biomedical Research Award, and election to American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

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