Shu-Hui Chuang

Dr. Samba Reddy's Lab

Phone: 979-436-0385
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Born and raised in Taiwan, Shu-Hui completed her Bachelor degree in Microbiology and Immunology from National Chiayi University and received her Master of Science in Physiology with a concentration in hypothalamic neuronal circuits from National Cheng Kung University, where she developed her passion in neuroscience research. Shortly after graduating, she worked as a research assistant in Department of Pharmacology at National Taiwan University and published 3 scientific papers in cancer research. Desiring to share her love of neuroscience research, she joined TAMHSC to pursue doctoral degree in 2013. She is working with Dr. D. Samba Reddy in epilepsy research with an emphasis on neurosteroids modulation and GABA-A receptor plasticity. When not working, Shu-Hui likes to travel and the outdoors. One of her lifetime goals is to visit all the places on the world map. She has been to Japan, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Germany, and she is now in North America! Her short-term goal is to visit all the national parks in America!

Shu-Hui’s main research interest is to unravel the interaction of neurosteroids with GABA-A receptor heterogeneity and its application in epilepsy treatment. She focuses on the influence of neurosteroids modulation on delta-containing GABA-A receptor-mediated tonic and phasic currents within the hippocampus by using whole-cell patch clamp recording in slices and dissociated neurons in a transgenic mouse model. She is also interested in exploring the role of GABA-A receptor delta subunit in mouse hippocampal development.

Nihal Salem

Dr. Rajesh Miranda's Lab

Phone: 979-436-0370
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Nihal is a Ph.D. student studying Neuroscience at Texas A&M Institute of Neuroscience. She earned her Master’s degree in Biotechnology from Texas A&M University and her B.Sc. in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the Faculty of Pharmacy, Ain Shams University, Egypt. Nihal has been working in Dr. Rajesh Miranda’s lab since 2014. She is interested in studying RNA biology, specifically the biology of long non-coding RNAs and their implications for neural stem cell pluripotency and maturation. Nihal currently focuses on assessing pseudogenes belonging to the OCT4 pluripotency factor family, studying their association with miRNAs. Her working hypothesis is that these pseudogene family members might act as miRNA sponges preventing miRNAs from repressing their targets. She is particularly interested in the role of these non-coding RNA regulatory pathways in mediating the teratogenic effects of drugs of abuse like alcohol in fetal alcohol syndrome.

Yifeng Cheng

Dr. Jun Wang's Lab

Phone: 979-436-0389
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Yifeng's research interest is to study neural circuit mechanisms of addictive behavior. As a Ph.D. candidate in the laboratory of Dr. Jun Wang, he investigates the role of dopamine D1 and D2 receptor-expressing (D1R and D2R) medium spiny neurons (MSNs) within the corticostriatal circuit in alcohol addiction. His research is focused on afferent input-specific and cell type-specific mechanisms underlying excessive alcohol consumption in a mouse model of alcohol addiction. To perform the research, he trained to and is currently able to utilize board techniques, including state-of-the-art optogenetics and chemicogentics (Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drug, DREADDs), to in vivo manipulate the activity of specific populations of neurons in the corticostriatal circuit of Bacterial Artificial Chromosome (BAC) transgenic mice. With this research, he hopes to understand how a specific neuronal population is involved in addiction-related behaviors, such as pathological excessive alcohol intake. His ultimate career goal is to find new therapeutic approaches to treat alcohol addiction.