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    Li Gan, PhD

    TitleProfessor
    SchoolUCSF School of Medicine
    DepartmentNeurology
    Address1650 Owens St
    San Francisco CA 94107
    Phone415-734-2524
    vCardDownload vCard

      Collapse Biography 
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      Yale University School of MedicinePh.DDepartment of Cellular and Molecular Physiology1996

      Collapse Overview 
      Collapse Overview
      Dr. Gan studies the molecular mechanisms behind the loss of functional neurons in neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease and Frontotemporal Dementia. Her lab explores the relationship between the aging of neural circuits, the accumulation of toxic proteins and the subsequent activation of a chronic inflammatory response. Understanding how these processes become dysfunctional in neurodegeneration could lead to new therapeutic strategies to tackle Alzheimer’s disease and Frontotemporal dementia.

      One aspect of Dr. Gan’s research focuses on why toxic proteins accumulate in the brains of Alzheimer patients. Dr. Gan and her team discovered new cellular mechanisms that could lead to novel approaches to get rid of the toxic proteins from aging neurons. Dr. Gan’s research also explores stem cell-based regenerative approaches ?in Alzheimer’s disease—a promising yet highly challenging therapeutic direction. Her study showed that neural stem cells in the hippocampus of mice genetically modified to mimic Alzheimer’s symptoms develop abnormally and integrate poorly into the network of neural circuits. More importantly, Dr. Gan and her colleagues find that they can offset these deficits by manipulating electrical signals via pharmacological approaches. Their research provides important clues to encourage the development of new brain cells in those with Alzheimer’s disease.

      At UCSF, Dr. Gan is active in graduate training and has joint appointments in the Neuroscience Graduate Program and the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program. She is also a member of several scientific and professional societies, including the Society for Neuroscience. Dr. Gan has served as a referee? for several government and private grant agencies, including the National Institutes of Health, the Alzheimer’s Association and the California Department of Health Services. She is also an ad hoc reviewer for numerous professional journals including Neuron, Nature Medicine, Journal of Neuroscience, and Journal of Cell Biology.

      Dr. Gan received a bachelor’s degree in physiology from China’s Peking University and a PhD in cellular and molecular physiology from Yale University School of Medicine. Later, she did postdoctoral training at Yale University School of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and the Gladstone Institutes.


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      Collapse Publications
      Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
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      1. Sohn PD, Tracy TE, Son HI, Zhou Y, Leite RE, Miller BL, Seeley WW, Grinberg LT, Gan L. Acetylated tau destabilizes the cytoskeleton in the axon initial segment and is mislocalized to the somatodendritic compartment. Mol Neurodegener. 2016; 11(1):47. PMID: 27356871.
        View in: PubMed
      2. Tracy TE, Sohn PD, Minami SS, Wang C, Min SW, Li Y, Zhou Y, Le D, Lo I, Ponnusamy R, Cong X, Schilling B, Ellerby LM, Huganir RL, Gan L. Acetylated Tau Obstructs KIBRA-Mediated Signaling in Synaptic Plasticity and Promotes Tauopathy-Related Memory Loss. Neuron. 2016 Apr 20; 90(2):245-60. PMID: 27041503.
        View in: PubMed
      3. Min SW, Chen X, Tracy TE, Li Y, Zhou Y, Wang C, Shirakawa K, Minami SS, Defensor E, Mok SA, Sohn PD, Schilling B, Cong X, Ellerby L, Gibson BW, Johnson J, Krogan N, Shamloo M, Gestwicki J, Masliah E, Verdin E, Gan L. Critical role of acetylation in tau-mediated neurodegeneration and cognitive deficits. Nat Med. 2015 Oct; 21(10):1154-62. PMID: 26390242; PMCID: PMC4598295 [Available on 04/01/16].
      4. Minami SS, Shen V, Le D, Krabbe G, Asgarov R, Perez-Celajes L, Lee CH, Li J, Donnelly-Roberts D, Gan L. Reducing inflammation and rescuing FTD-related behavioral deficits in progranulin-deficient mice with a7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists. Biochem Pharmacol. 2015 Oct 15; 97(4):454-62. PMID: 26206194.
        View in: PubMed
      5. Tan BY, Yong RY, Barajas-Martinez H, Dumaine R, Chew YX, Wasan PS, Ching CK, Ho KL, Gan LS, Morin N, Chong AP, Yap SH, Neo JL, Yap EP, Moochhala S, Chong DT, Chow W, Seow SC, Hu D, Uttamchandani M, Teo WS. A Brugada syndrome proband with compound heterozygote SCN5A mutations identified from a Chinese family in Singapore. Europace. 2016 Jun; 18(6):897-904. PMID: 25829473.
        View in: PubMed
      6. Cho SH, Chen JA, Sayed F, Ward ME, Gao F, Nguyen TA, Krabbe G, Sohn PD, Lo I, Minami S, Devidze N, Zhou Y, Coppola G, Gan L. SIRT1 deficiency in microglia contributes to cognitive decline in aging and neurodegeneration via epigenetic regulation of IL-1ß. J Neurosci. 2015 Jan 14; 35(2):807-18. PMID: 25589773; PMCID: PMC4293425.
      7. Minami SS, Min SW, Krabbe G, Wang C, Zhou Y, Asgarov R, Li Y, Martens LH, Elia LP, Ward ME, Mucke L, Farese RV, Gan L. Progranulin protects against amyloid ß deposition and toxicity in Alzheimer's disease mouse models. Nat Med. 2014 Oct; 20(10):1157-64. PMID: 25261995; PMCID: PMC4196723.
      8. Ward ME, Taubes A, Chen R, Miller BL, Sephton CF, Gelfand JM, Minami S, Boscardin J, Martens LH, Seeley WW, Yu G, Herz J, Filiano AJ, Arrant AE, Roberson ED, Kraft TW, Farese RV, Green A, Gan L. Early retinal neurodegeneration and impaired Ran-mediated nuclear import of TDP-43 in progranulin-deficient FTLD. J Exp Med. 2014 Sep 22; 211(10):1937-45. PMID: 25155018; PMCID: PMC4172214.
      9. Huang L, Gan LS, Law LY. Evaluation of a prototype ration aimed at increasing caloric intake in a field environment. Mil Med. 2014 Feb; 179(2):190-6. PMID: 24491616.
        View in: PubMed
      10. Min SW, Sohn PD, Cho SH, Swanson RA, Gan L. Sirtuins in neurodegenerative diseases: an update on potential mechanisms. Front Aging Neurosci. 2013; 5:53. PMID: 24093018; PMCID: PMC3782645.
      11. Kauppinen TM, Gan L, Swanson RA. Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1-induced NAD(+) depletion promotes nuclear factor-?B transcriptional activity by preventing p65 de-acetylation. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013 Aug; 1833(8):1985-91. PMID: 23597856; PMCID: PMC4041949.
      12. Grinberg LT, Wang X, Wang C, Sohn PD, Theofilas P, Sidhu M, Arevalo JB, Heinsen H, Huang EJ, Rosen H, Miller BL, Gan L, Seeley WW. Argyrophilic grain disease differs from other tauopathies by lacking tau acetylation. Acta Neuropathol. 2013 Apr; 125(4):581-93. PMID: 23371364; PMCID: PMC3692283.
      13. Wong LP, Ong RT, Poh WT, Liu X, Chen P, Li R, Lam KK, Pillai NE, Sim KS, Xu H, Sim NL, Teo SM, Foo JN, Tan LW, Lim Y, Koo SH, Gan LS, Cheng CY, Wee S, Yap EP, Ng PC, Lim WY, Soong R, Wenk MR, Aung T, Wong TY, Khor CC, Little P, Chia KS, Teo YY. Deep whole-genome sequencing of 100 southeast Asian Malays. Am J Hum Genet. 2013 Jan 10; 92(1):52-66. PMID: 23290073; PMCID: PMC3542459.
      14. Martens LH, Zhang J, Barmada SJ, Zhou P, Kamiya S, Sun B, Min SW, Gan L, Finkbeiner S, Huang EJ, Farese RV. Progranulin deficiency promotes neuroinflammation and neuron loss following toxin-induced injury. J Clin Invest. 2012 Nov; 122(11):3955-9. PMID: 23041626; PMCID: PMC3484443.
      15. Wang C, Sun B, Zhou Y, Grubb A, Gan L. Cathepsin B degrades amyloid-ß in mice expressing wild-type human amyloid precursor protein. J Biol Chem. 2012 Nov 16; 287(47):39834-41. PMID: 23024364; PMCID: PMC3501032.
      16. Pappas DJ, Gabatto PA, Oksenberg D, Khankhanian P, Baranzini SE, Gan L, Oksenberg JR. Transcriptional expression patterns triggered by chemically distinct neuroprotective molecules. Neuroscience. 2012 Dec 13; 226:10-20. PMID: 22986168; PMCID: PMC3489981.
      17. Minami SS, Sun B, Popat K, Kauppinen T, Pleiss M, Zhou Y, Ward ME, Floreancig P, Mucke L, Desai T, Gan L. Selective targeting of microglia by quantum dots. J Neuroinflammation. 2012; 9:22. PMID: 22272874; PMCID: PMC3292839.
      18. Kauppinen TM, Suh SW, Higashi Y, Berman AE, Escartin C, Won SJ, Wang C, Cho SH, Gan L, Swanson RA. Poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase-1 modulates microglial responses to amyloid ß. J Neuroinflammation. 2011; 8:152. PMID: 22051244; PMCID: PMC3247192.
      19. Zhang F, Wang S, Gan L, Vosler PS, Gao Y, Zigmond MJ, Chen J. Protective effects and mechanisms of sirtuins in the nervous system. Prog Neurobiol. 2011 Nov; 95(3):373-95. PMID: 21930182; PMCID: PMC3242010.
      20. Cho SH, Sun B, Zhou Y, Kauppinen TM, Halabisky B, Wes P, Ransohoff RM, Gan L. CX3CR1 protein signaling modulates microglial activation and protects against plaque-independent cognitive deficits in a mouse model of Alzheimer disease. J Biol Chem. 2011 Sep 16; 286(37):32713-22. PMID: 21771791; PMCID: PMC3173153.
      21. Min SW, Cho SH, Zhou Y, Schroeder S, Haroutunian V, Seeley WW, Huang EJ, Shen Y, Masliah E, Mukherjee C, Meyers D, Cole PA, Ott M, Gan L. Acetylation of tau inhibits its degradation and contributes to tauopathy. Neuron. 2010 Sep 23; 67(6):953-66. PMID: 20869593; PMCID: PMC3035103.
      22. Gan LS, Loh JP. Rapid identification of chloroquine and atovaquone drug resistance in Plasmodium falciparum using high-resolution melt polymerase chain reaction. Malar J. 2010; 9:134. PMID: 20487570; PMCID: PMC2881075.
      23. Sun B, Halabisky B, Zhou Y, Palop JJ, Yu G, Mucke L, Gan L. Imbalance between GABAergic and Glutamatergic Transmission Impairs Adult Neurogenesis in an Animal Model of Alzheimer's Disease. Cell Stem Cell. 2009 Dec 4; 5(6):624-33. PMID: 19951690; PMCID: PMC2823799.
      24. Yong RY, Gan LS, Chua EM, Yap EP. Polymorphism studies of six miniSTR loci for three ethnic populations in Singapore. Leg Med (Tokyo). 2009 Jul; 11(4):195-7. PMID: 19285901.
        View in: PubMed
      25. Sun B, Zhou Y, Halabisky B, Lo I, Cho SH, Mueller-Steiner S, Devidze N, Wang X, Grubb A, Gan L. Cystatin C-cathepsin B axis regulates amyloid beta levels and associated neuronal deficits in an animal model of Alzheimer's disease. Neuron. 2008 Oct 23; 60(2):247-57. PMID: 18957217; PMCID: PMC2755563.
      26. Sanchez-Mejia RO, Newman JW, Toh S, Yu GQ, Zhou Y, Halabisky B, Cissé M, Scearce-Levie K, Cheng IH, Gan L, Palop JJ, Bonventre JV, Mucke L. Phospholipase A2 reduction ameliorates cognitive deficits in a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease. Nat Neurosci. 2008 Nov; 11(11):1311-8. PMID: 18931664; PMCID: PMC2597064.
      27. Gan L, Mucke L. Paths of convergence: sirtuins in aging and neurodegeneration. Neuron. 2008 Apr 10; 58(1):10-4. PMID: 18400158.
        View in: PubMed
      28. Yong RY, Gan LS, Chang YM, Yap EP. Molecular characterization of a polymorphic 3-Mb deletion at chromosome Yp11.2 containing the AMELY locus in Singapore and Malaysia populations. Hum Genet. 2007 Nov; 122(3-4):237-49. PMID: 17588179.
        View in: PubMed
      29. Gan L. Therapeutic potential of sirtuin-activating compounds in Alzheimer's disease. Drug News Perspect. 2007 May; 20(4):233-9. PMID: 17637936.
        View in: PubMed
      30. Yong RY, Gan LS, Coble MD, Yap EP. Polymorphism studies of four miniSTR loci for three ethnic populations in Singapore. Leg Med (Tokyo). 2007 Sep; 9(5):278-81. PMID: 17467323.
        View in: PubMed
      31. Mueller-Steiner S, Zhou Y, Arai H, Roberson ED, Sun B, Chen J, Wang X, Yu G, Esposito L, Mucke L, Gan L. Antiamyloidogenic and neuroprotective functions of cathepsin B: implications for Alzheimer's disease. Neuron. 2006 Sep 21; 51(6):703-14. PMID: 16982417.
        View in: PubMed
      32. Chen J, Zhou Y, Mueller-Steiner S, Chen LF, Kwon H, Yi S, Mucke L, Gan L. SIRT1 protects against microglia-dependent amyloid-beta toxicity through inhibiting NF-kappaB signaling. J Biol Chem. 2005 Dec 2; 280(48):40364-74. PMID: 16183991.
        View in: PubMed
      33. Kaczmarek LK, Bhattacharjee A, Desai R, Gan L, Song P, von Hehn CA, Whim MD, Yang B. Regulation of the timing of MNTB neurons by short-term and long-term modulation of potassium channels. Hear Res. 2005 Aug; 206(1-2):133-45. PMID: 16081004.
        View in: PubMed
      34. Esposito L, Gan L, Yu GQ, Essrich C, Mucke L. Intracellularly generated amyloid-beta peptide counteracts the antiapoptotic function of its precursor protein and primes proapoptotic pathways for activation by other insults in neuroblastoma cells. J Neurochem. 2004 Dec; 91(6):1260-74. PMID: 15584903.
        View in: PubMed
      35. Gresch O, Engel FB, Nesic D, Tran TT, England HM, Hickman ES, Körner I, Gan L, Chen S, Castro-Obregon S, Hammermann R, Wolf J, Müller-Hartmann H, Nix M, Siebenkotten G, Kraus G, Lun K. New non-viral method for gene transfer into primary cells. Methods. 2004 Jun; 33(2):151-63. PMID: 15121170.
        View in: PubMed
      36. Gan L, Ye S, Chu A, Anton K, Yi S, Vincent VA, von Schack D, Chin D, Murray J, Lohr S, Patthy L, Gonzalez-Zulueta M, Nikolich K, Urfer R. Identification of cathepsin B as a mediator of neuronal death induced by Abeta-activated microglial cells using a functional genomics approach. J Biol Chem. 2004 Feb 13; 279(7):5565-72. PMID: 14612454.
        View in: PubMed
      37. Ford BD, Liu Y, Mann MA, Krauss R, Phillips K, Gan L, Fischbach GD. Neuregulin-1 suppresses muscarinic receptor expression and acetylcholine-activated muscarinic K+ channels in cardiac myocytes. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2003 Aug 15; 308(1):23-8. PMID: 12890474.
        View in: PubMed
      38. Bhattacharjee A, Gan L, Kaczmarek LK. Localization of the Slack potassium channel in the rat central nervous system. J Comp Neurol. 2002 Dec 16; 454(3):241-54. PMID: 12442315.
        View in: PubMed
      39. Gan L, Anton KE, Masterson BA, Vincent VA, Ye S, Gonzalez-Zulueta M. Specific interference with gene expression and gene function mediated by long dsRNA in neural cells. J Neurosci Methods. 2002 Dec 15; 121(2):151-7. PMID: 12468005.
        View in: PubMed
      40. Gan L, Hahn SJ, Kaczmarek LK. Cell type-specific expression of the Kv3.1 gene is mediated by a negative element in the 5' untranslated region of the Kv3.1 promoter. J Neurochem. 1999 Oct; 73(4):1350-62. PMID: 10501178.
        View in: PubMed
      41. Xu X, Yang D, Wyss-Coray T, Yan J, Gan L, Sun Y, Mucke L. Wild-type but not Alzheimer-mutant amyloid precursor protein confers resistance against p53-mediated apoptosis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1999 Jun 22; 96(13):7547-52. PMID: 10377452; PMCID: PMC22123.
      42. Joiner WJ, Tang MD, Wang LY, Dworetzky SI, Boissard CG, Gan L, Gribkoff VK, Kaczmarek LK. Formation of intermediate-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels by interaction of Slack and Slo subunits. Nat Neurosci. 1998 Oct; 1(6):462-9. PMID: 10196543.
        View in: PubMed
      43. Gan L, Kaczmarek LK. When, where, and how much? Expression of the Kv3.1 potassium channel in high-frequency firing neurons. J Neurobiol. 1998 Oct; 37(1):69-79. PMID: 9777733.
        View in: PubMed
      44. Wang LY, Gan L, Forsythe ID, Kaczmarek LK. Contribution of the Kv3.1 potassium channel to high-frequency firing in mouse auditory neurones. J Physiol. 1998 May 15; 509 ( Pt 1):183-94. PMID: 9547392; PMCID: PMC2230948.
      45. Wang LY, Gan L, Perney TM, Schwartz I, Kaczmarek LK. Activation of Kv3.1 channels in neuronal spine-like structures may induce local potassium ion depletion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1998 Feb 17; 95(4):1882-7. PMID: 9465111; PMCID: PMC19207.
      46. Gan L, Perney TM, Kaczmarek LK. Cloning and characterization of the promoter for a potassium channel expressed in high frequency firing neurons. J Biol Chem. 1996 Mar 8; 271(10):5859-65. PMID: 8621457.
        View in: PubMed
      47. Kanemasa T, Gan L, Perney TM, Wang LY, Kaczmarek LK. Electrophysiological and pharmacological characterization of a mammalian Shaw channel expressed in NIH 3T3 fibroblasts. J Neurophysiol. 1995 Jul; 74(1):207-17. PMID: 7472324.
        View in: PubMed
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