Donggen Luo

2019-08-16 21:41:55 2

Donggen Luo

Peking-Tsinghua Center for Life Sciences

Academy for Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies

McGovern Institute for Brain Research

Center for Quantitative Biology

College of Life Sciences

Peking University

Beijing, China

Office number: 62760611








Peking University, College of Life Sciences, Peking-Tsinghua Center for Life Sciences,

Principle Investigator

2009 - 2013

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD

Research Associate, Department of Neuroscience

2003 - 2009

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD

Post-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Neuroscience

Advisor: King-Wai YAU, Ph.D.

1999 - 2003

Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, China

Ph.D., Neurobiology

Advisor: Xiong-Li YANG, Ph.D.

1996 - 1999

East China Normal University, Shanghai, China

M.S., Physiology

Advisor: En-Qi WENG, Ph.D.

1992 - 1996

East China Normal University, Shanghai, China

B.A., Environmental Science





Animals detect physical/chemical cues in the surroundings, and react accordingly for survival and reproduction. We investigate how the animal’s sensory systems convert these cues into neuronal signals and transmit them to the brain, and how the brain then makes sense of these signals.

Throughout evolution, sensory circuits and modalities are, by and large, conserved across species. Among model systems, we utilize a genetically-malleable species, Drosophila, wherein we can label and manipulate specific neurons, to understand sensory perception by studying its cellular, circuitry and behavioral mechanisms. As such, we aim to understand sensory processing at all levels: from molecules to behavioral responses. The genetic approach is accompanied by a state-of-the-art integrated investigation involving sensitive behavioral assays, in vivo two-photon-based calcium imaging, and patch-clamp recordings (from brain neurons of a behaving fly).




Cao LH, Luo DG and Yau KW. (2014) Light responses of primate and other mammalian cones. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 111, 2752-2757.


Luo DG*, Yue WWS, Ala-Laurila P and Yau KW* (2011) Activation of visual pigments by light and heat. Science 332, 1037-1312. (*Co-corresponding Authors)


Fu Y*, Vladimir K*Luo DG*, Xue T* and Yau KW (2008) Quantal noise from human red cone pigment. Nature Neurosci. 11, 565-571. (* Equal Contributions).


Baehr W, Karan S, Maeda T, Luo DG, Li S, Bronson JD, Watt CB, Yau KW, Frederick JM and Palczewski K (2007) The function of guanylate cyclase 1 (GC1) and guanylate cyclase 2 (GC2) in rod and cone photoreceptors. J. Biol. Chem. 282, 8837-8847.


Su CY, Luo DG, Terakita A, Shichida Y, Liao HW, Kazmi MA, Sakmar TP and Yau KW (2006) Parietal-eye phototransduction components and their potential evolutionary implications. Science 311, 11617-11621.



Luo DG and Yau KW  (2005) Rod sensitivity of neonatal mouse and rat. J. Gen. Physiol.126, 263-269.



Fu YB, Zhong HN, Wang MH, Luo DG, Liao HW, Maeda H, Hattar S, Frishman LJ and Yau KW  (2005) Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells detect light with a Vitamin A-based photopigment, melanopsin. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 102, 10339-10344.



Huttl S, Michalakis S, Seeliger M, Luo DG, Acar N, Geiger H, Hudl K, Mader R, Haverkamp S, Moser M, Pfeifer A, Gerstner A, Yau KW and Biel M (2005) Impaired channel targeting and retinal degeneration in mice lacking the cyclic nucleotide-gated channel subunit CNGB1. J. Neurosci. 25, 130-138.


Huang H, Luo DG, Shen Y, Zhang AJ, Yang R and Yang XL (2004) AMPA receptor is involved in transmission of cone signal to ON bipolar cells in carp retina. Brain Res. 1002, 86-93.


Luo DG and Yang XL (2002) Suppression by zinc of transient OFF responses of carp amacrine cells to red light is mediated by GABAA receptors. Brain Res. 958, 222-226.



Luo DG, Li GL and Yang XL (2002) Zn2+ modulates light responses of color-opponent bipolar and amacrine cells in the carp retina. Brain Res. Bull. 58, 461-468.



Luo DG and Yang XL (2001) Zn2+ differentially modulates signals from red- and short wavelength-sensitive cones to horizontal cells in carp retina. Brain Res. 900, 95-102.


Xu HP, Luo DG and Yang XL (2001) Signals from cone photoreceptors to L-type horizontal cells are differentially modulated by low calcium in carp retina. Eur. J. Neurosci. 13, 1411-1419.




Luo DG, Xue T and Yau KW (2008) How vision begins: an odyssey. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 1059855-9862.





Luo DG, Su CY and Yau KW (2009) Photoreceptors: Physiology. In Encyclopedia of Neuroscience, Vol. 7, (Ed. Squire, LR) Academic Press, pp. 677-686.

Luo DG, Kefalov VJ and Yau KW (2007) Phototransduction in rods and cones. In The Senses: A Comprehensive Reference. (Eds. Masland HR and Albright TD) Elsevier, pp 269-301.