Dr. Yu leads a research group to identify the brain nuclei potentially contributing to the switch of brain states in rodents, such as the comatose or arousal states. Optogenetics, calcium recording mediated by genetic-encoded calcium indicators (GECIs) , e.g. GCaMP, and electrophysiological recording methods are combined with high field fMRI to study the altered brain function at multiple scales from molecules, to cells, and eventually to neurovascular coupling circuits. A central hypothesis to be tested is that there are “core switches”, which can be modulated to ameliorate the comatose state of the rat brain (a rat coma model have been developed). Small animal fMRI provides critical guide to target the candidate brain nuclei of animals during acute coma progression and emergence from coma. Simultaneous calcium recordings, in accompany with electro-physio-chemical recordings, can further interpret the brain state changes detected by fMRI. In addition, a multi-scale bio-feedback neural network system is developed to optimize controlling schemes for optogenetically driven deep brain stimulation. We are expecting to translate the knowledge acquired from the rodent brain to lead specific neural control therapies of coma patients.
Pais-Roldán P, Singh AP, Schulz H, Yu X (2016). High magnetic field induced otolith fusion in the zebrafish larvae. Scientific Reports 6, 1-11.
Yu X*, He Y, Wang M, Merkle H, Dodd S, Silva A, Koretsky A* (2016). Sensory and optogenetically driven single vessel fMRI. Nature Methods 13, 337-340. * corresponding authors
Yu X*, Qian C, Chen D-Y, Dodd S, Koretsky A* (2014). Deciphering laminar-specific neural inputs with line-scanning fMRI. Nature Methods 11, 55-58.* corresponding authors.
Yu X, Chung S, Chen D-Y, Wang S, Dodd S, Walters J, Isaac J, Koretsky A (2012). Thalamocortical inputs show post-critical-period plasticity. Neuron 74:731-42.
Yu X, Glen D, Wang S, Dodd S, Hirano Y, Silva A, Koretsky A (2012). Direct imaging of macrovascular and microvascular contributions to BOLD fMRI in layers IV-V of the rat whisker-barrel cortex. Neuroimage 59: 1451-60.