Tsunoda Lab

The Tsunoda lab works on the plasticity of signaling in neurons. Current projects examine how neurons, synapses, and the whole animal adapt to hyper- and hypo- excitation of the system. Current projects investigate how ion channel and receptor expression and function change to protect neural signaling when confronted with changes that can occur during pathological conditions like seizure, stroke, or disease, as well as changes in sensory input that can overload a system. Using Drosophila melanogaster as our model system allows us to apply a wide variety of approaches to correlate recordings of activity by electrophysiology in the intact brain to genetic manipulations, and ultimately, to whole animal behavior.

The Tsunoda lab has a long-standing interest in creating a vibrant and collegial environment that is welcoming to students and researchers from all over the world. If you are an interested student, please email Dr. Tsunoda. In support of getting undergraduates familiar with research, Dr. Tsunoda also teaches a unique experiential research course, BMS 401: Laboratory Research in Biomedical Sciences.


Saedi H, Waro G, Giacchetta L, Tsunoda S: miR-137 regulates PTP61F, affecting insulin signaling, metabolic homeostasis, and starvation resistance in Drosophila. PNAS (2024); 121(5) e2319475121.

Byers N, Hahm E-T, Tsunoda, S: Slo2/KNa Channels in Drosophila Protect Against Spontaneous and Induced Seizure-like Behavior Associated with an Increased Persistent Na+ Current. Journal of Neuroscience 2021; 41(43): 9047-9063.

Eadaim A, Hahm E-T, Justice ED, Tsunoda S: Cholinergic Synaptic Homeostasis is Tuned by an NFAT-Mediated α7 nAChR-Kv4 Coupled Regulatory System. Cell Reports 2020; 32(10): 108119.

Hahm E, Nagaraja R, Waro G, Tsunoda S: Cholinergic Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity Drives the Progression of Aβ-Induced Changes in Neural Activity. Cell Reports 2018; 24: 342-354.

Ping Y*, Hahm E*, Waro G*, Song Q, Vo-Ba D, Licursi A, Bao H, Ganoe L, Finch K, Tsunoda S: Linking Aβ42-Induced Hyperexcitability to Neurodegeneration, Learning and Motor Deficits, and a Shorter Lifespan in an Alzheimer’s Model.  PLoS Genetics 2015; 11(3):e1005025.

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Susan Tsunoda, PhD

Principle Investigator, Professor, Dept. of Biomedical Sciences

Girma Waro, PhD

Senior Research Associate

Colin Hahm, PhD

Senior Scientist

Hana Saedi

PhD Student

Nathan Pettid

PhD Student

Taylor Zhao

PhD Student

Erica Gill

PhD Student

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