Hyunjung Oh, Ph.D.


Dr. Oh is a Project Scientist who leads a research group focusing on neural plasticity and adaptation in the Department of Neurobiology of Depression and Aging. She completed her Ph.D. in Neurobiology at the University of Pittsburgh, USA, and a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Translational Neuroscience at CAMH.

 

Our Research Focus


Proper brain functioning critically depends on coordinated activity within and across brain areas, a process that is maintained by a homeostatic balance of signaling between networks of excitatory pyramidal cells (PCs) and inhibitory GABAergic neurons. Dr. Oh’s research focuses on the mechanisms underlying molecular adaptations in major cell types of cortical microcircuits in health and disease, in the hope that the knowledge will give insights into how cell-specific alterations give rise to symptoms of mental illness, which can, in turn, precisely guide novel therapeutic strategies.

Investigating the role of CRH-expressing Neurons in Health and Disease 

Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) is implicated in a wide range of psychiatric illness. Our recent meta-analysis study revealed significant decrease of CRH expression in cortical regions in subjects with major depressive disorder (MDD), suggesting that CRH(+) cells may be affected by diseaseCurrently we are investigating MDD-associated molecular changes in CRH-expressing neurons 

 Small Molecules Targeting Reduced Brain Plasticity in Psychiatric Disorders

Neuroplasticity, the brain’s ability to adapt to environmental changes, is impaired in brain disorders. We have shown that low BDNF and/or TrkB expression is associated with reduced neuroplasticity in the brains of MDD patients and older peopleThe current focus is to develop small molecules alleviating mood and cognitive symptoms of MDD by stimulating BDNF activity.  

Team Publications


Oh H, Piantadosi SC, Rocco BR, Lewis DA, Watkins S,Sibille E. The Role of Dendritic BDNF Transcripts on Altered Inhibitory Circuitry in Depression. Biol psychiatry. 2019 Mar 15;85(6):517-526. 

Rocco BR, Oh H, Shukla R, Mechawar N, Sibille E. Fluorescence-based cell-specific detection for laser-capture microdissection in human brain. Sci Rep. 2017 Oct 27;7(1):14213.

Oh H, Lewis DA, Sibille E. The Role of BDNF in Age-Dependent Changes of Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Markers in Human Prefrontal Cortex. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2016 Dec;41(13):3080-3091. 

McKinney B, Oh H, Lin CW, Tseng G, Lewis D,Sibille E. The Somatostatin Promoter is Hypermethylated in the Aged Human Prefrontal Cortex. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2015 Oct;40(11):2604-13. 

Tripp A*, Oh H*, Guilloux JP, Martinowich K, Lewis D, Sibille E. BDNF Signaling and Subgenual Anterior Cingulate Cortex Dysfunction in Major Depression. Am J Psychiatry. 2012 Nov;169(11):1194-202. (* indicates co-first author).

 

Add more on Google Schoolar