Bio-X SIGF Graduate Student Fellow

Awarded in 2012
Home Department: Biology
Faculty Advisors: Liqun Luo (Biology) and Thomas Clandinin (Neurobiology)

Research Title: Building and applying genetic tools to dissect the neural circuits underlying behavior

Research Description: We intuitively sense pleasant or noxious smells, and olfactory attraction or aversion prevails in many organisms. How does the brain make this binary decision about an odor? Almost nothing is known about the neural circuit for this computation. Xiaojing is using fruit flies as a model to address this question. To reveal the roles of specific neurons in olfactory behavior, he non-invasively manipulates their activity with state-of-the-art genetic tools and quantitatively analyzes the change in the animal’s response to odors. His work may advance our general knowledge regarding how sensation leads to action and help pest control.


Xiaojing is an assistant professor of chemical engineering at Stanford.