Ole Kiehn

Ole Kiehn


Short research description

A monumental challenge in neuroscience is to understand the operation of neuronal networks that are linked to execution of specific behaviors. Our lab is meeting this challenge by addressing the organization of neuronal networks that produce movements, the origin of all behaviors.

We study the molecular, cellular, and network diversification of locomotor circuitries in mammals with the goal of providing a unified understanding of the functional organization of neuronal circuits that execute movements. To this end, we apply new physiological and molecular genetic approaches, including optogenetics, RNA-seq, molecular tracing, advanced imaging, and electrophysiology.

We have deciphered the functional organization of spinal circuitries necessary for producing changes in timing and coordination of locomotion, and delineated brainstem circuits involved in gating or context-dependent selection of motor behaviors.

The lab also investigates plasticity in spinal networks and motor neurons following lesions of the spinal cord, with the goal of devising manipulations that may alleviate motor dysfunction following spinal cord injury.

In recent efforts, we also address the role of spinal interneurons in development and progression of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Our work bridges the gap between neuronal circuit organization and behaviour, and has strong translational potential in development of therapies for movement disorders caused by trauma or disease.

ID: 173691709