CURRENT LAB MEMBERS

JENS HJERLING LEFFLER, PhD

Associate Professor and Group Leader
+46 8 52486974
jens.hjerling-leffler@ki.se
PhD 2006, Karolinska Institutet

CAROLINA BENGTSSON GONZALES

PhD-student
carolina.bengtsson.gonzales@ki.se
BSc 2012, Karolinska Institutet

What fascinated me most when I first started in the field of neuroscience, was the ability to translate abstract phenomena, such as memory and feelings into concrete neural circuits. When I became aware of the velocity and almost error-free outcome of these neural circuits, my interest for the extremely fine-tuned underlying mechanisms arose. Hence, today my main focus lies on the very experts in fine-tuning, the inhibitory interneurons. By studying the heterogeneity, function and connectivity of diverse interneuron subtypes, as well as their effects on the behavioral outcome, I hope to elucidate the network basis involved in striatal neuromodulation.

TANJA BHUIYAN, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow
tanja.bhuiyan@ki.se
PhD 2015, University of Lausanne. BSc & MSc 2010, University of Stuttgart.

What brought me to neuroscience was my fascination about the brain’s complexity and the notion that we still know so little about its functions. I am interested in adolescence, a crucial period of brain development, in which cognitive abilities and socio-emotional development continue to unfold and shape the human being. Because neurons continue to mature during adolescence, perturbation of neurodevelopmental processes in this period can lead to psychiatric diseases, typically with onset in late adolescence or early adulthood. My overarching goal in the Hjerling-Leffler lab is to unravel the genetic programs underlying adolescent neurodevelopment in the cortex. I focus my analysis on a specific neuronal cell type, the parvalbumin-expressing inhibitory interneurons.

JOSÉ A. MARTÍNEZ-LÓPEZ, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow
jose.martinez.lopez@ki.se
PhD 2016, University of Seville. MEng 2013, University of Seville. BE 2008, University of Seville.

HERMANY MUNGUBA

PhD-student
hermany.munguba@ki.se
MSc 2013, Brain Institute Natal/Uppsala University. BSc 2010, Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte.

What first attracted me to neuroscience was to understand how the brain could convert our daily experiences into memories. Though still fascinated about that, I currently find myself intrigued by how neurons wire up during development, knowing where to go, whom to talk to and most fascinating how this integration yields the components of our mind. During my PhD I want to understand how different types of inhibitory neurons participate in their allocated networks and more specifically what is changing with their gene expression and electrophysiological properties throughout their maturation.

ANA B. MUÑOZ-MANCHADO, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow
ana.munoz.manchado@ki.se
PhD 2012, University of Seville. Degree in biology 2004, University of Seville.

Since I joined the lab in January 2012 I have been studying the different interneuron populations in several brain areas such as the cortex, hippocampus and striatum. Coming already from the neuroscience field but with a biomedical focus, my research in the Hjerling-Leffler lab has turned more molecular trying to understand the role of these heterogeneous neurons starting with their individual transcriptome information to continue elucidating the circuits where they are implicated.

KASRA NIKOUEI

MD/PhD-student
kasra.nikouei@ki.se

Why am I interested in neuroscience? Maybe the real question should be what has lead me to become a neuroscientist? Neuroscience of the future may answer which question is most suitable. For thousands of years humans have tried to describe the universe and yet still we lack knowledge about some of the fundamentals that set humans apart from rest of the animal kingdom. Intersection of several different disciplines and the rapid development of tools have made it very intriguing to be part of the neuroscience revolution.

NATHAN SKENE, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow
nathan.skene@ki.se
PhD 2014, University of Cambridge. MPhil 2009, University of Cambridge. BSc 2008, University of Reading.

ALUMNI

BO BEKKOUCHE

Lund University, Sweden
bo.bekkouche@biol.lu.se

CLAIRE FOLDI, PhD

The University of Melbourne, Australia
+61 (0)432 821 576
claire.foldi@gmail.com

ROGER LAKTENA

Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
roger.laktena@stud.ki.se

MARLENA LÜBKE

Heidelberg University, Germany
M.Luebke@stud.uni-heidelberg.de

STEPHAN NILSSON, MD

Karolinska University Hospital, Sweden
nilsson.stephan@gmail.com

POLINA OBERST

University of Geneva, Switzerland
polina.oberst@unige.ch