Addiction, Biophysics, Electrophysiology, Neurophysiology, Neuroscience, Protein Trafficking & Sorting, Signal Transduction, Synaptic Plasticity
Multi-Disciplinary Training Areas
Biophysics and Systems Pharmacology [BSP], Neuroscience [NEU]
BA, Reed College
PhD, University of California, San Francisco
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California, San Francisco
NARSAD Independent Investigator Award
McKnight Technological Innovations in Neuroscience Award
Human Frontiers Science Program Young Investigator Grant
McKnight Scholars Award in Neuroscience
Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow
My long-term objective is to discover new drugs for treating addiction to drugs of abuse and alcohol. Currently, there are few FDA approved drugs for treating these diseases and more are greatly needed. Many of the neurotransmitters in the drug-reward pathway exert their effects by activating G protein-coupled receptors, which, in turn, communicate with specific G proteins and affect down-stream signaling pathways. One of the down-stream targets is the G protein-gated inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) channel, which we study in my laboratory. By controlling the membrane excitability of neurons, GIRK channels provide a fundamental source of neuromodulatory inhibition in the brain. My laboratory has been addressing fundamental questions concerning the function of GIRK channels in the brain, taking a broad approach of combining structural biology, biochemistry, electrophysiology and behavior. We have contributed significant work on the mechanism underlying G protein-regulation and gating of GIRK channels, provided evidence for the assembly of GIRK channels in macromolecular signaling complexes, and identified novel proteins that regulate GIRK channels. More recently, we have elucidated the subcellular mechanisms underlying the neuroplastic changes in GIRK channel signaling with drugs of abuse and alcohol. See lab web page for more details.
Dr. Ian Glaaser (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Dr. Xiaofan Li (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Dr. Yulin Zhao (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Robert Rifkin (BSP: MD/PhD student)
Emre Lacin (Neuro: PhD student)
Tyler Kern (Neuro: master’s student)
Erin Aisenberg (Research technician)
Munoz MB, Slesinger PA. Sorting nexin 27 regulation of G protein-gated inwardly rectifying K⁺ channels attenuates in vivo cocaine response. Neuron 2014 May; 82(3).
Bodhinathan K, Slesinger PA. Molecular mechanism underlying ethanol activation of G-protein-gated inwardly rectifying potassium channels. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2013 Nov; 110(45).
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Dr.Slesinger did not report having any of the following types of financial relationships with industry during 2016 and/or 2017: consulting, scientific advisory board, industry-sponsored lectures, service on Board of Directors, participation on industry-sponsored committees, equity ownership valued at greater than 5% of a publicly traded company or any value in a privately held company. Please note that this information may differ from information posted on corporate sites due to timing or classification differences.
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