Yao Chen

Assistant Professor of Neuroscience, Assistant Professor of Cell Biology and Physiology

    • 275 Citations

    Research output per year

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    Personal profile

    Research interests

    Neuromodulators such as dopamine and acetylcholine have profound effects on animal behavior. Altered neuromodulation is associated with most psychiatric disorders, major neurodegenerative disorders, and neuromodulatory systems are targets of almost all drugs of abuse. While specific behaviors have been linked to specific neuromodulators, and while many neuromodulator receptors and their downstream signaling pathways are known, how neuromodulators regulate behavior remains enigmatic. The knowledge gap exists because our understanding of molecular signaling networks remains largely a static diagram of connections between molecules. Our laboratory attempts to bridge molecular neuroscience and animal behavior by elucidating the spatial and temporal dynamics of biological signals, because they carry critical information that explain subsequent modifications of cells, circuits, and behavior. Specifically, we aim to understand how spatial and temporal features of neuromodulators and intracellular signals contribute to the functions of neuromodulators and functions of sleep. Understanding these important features will ultimately help treat psychiatric disorders.

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    Research Output

    • 275 Citations
    • 5 Article
    • 1 Comment/debate
    • 1 Short survey
    • 1 Review article

    Monitoring behaviorally induced biochemical changes using fluorescence lifetime photometry

    Lee, S. J., Chen, Y., Lodder, B. & Sabatini, B. L., Jan 1 2019, In : Frontiers in Genetics. 10, JUL, 766.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • Endogenous Gαq-Coupled Neuromodulator Receptors Activate Protein Kinase A

    Chen, Y., Granger, A. J., Tran, T., Saulnier, J. L., Kirkwood, A. & Sabatini, B. L., Dec 6 2017, In : Neuron. 96, 5, p. 1070-1083.e5

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 16 Scopus citations
    Open Access

    A PKA activity sensor for quantitative analysis of endogenous GPCR signaling via 2-photon FRET-FLIM imaging

    Chen, Y., Saulnier, J. L., Yellen, G. & Sabatini, B. L., Jan 1 2014, In : Frontiers in Pharmacology. 5 APR, Article 56.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 38 Scopus citations

    Signaling in dendritic spines and spine microdomains

    Chen, Y. & Sabatini, B. L., Jun 1 2012, In : Current Opinion in Neurobiology. 22, 3, p. 389-396 8 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

  • 42 Scopus citations