Vikaas Sohal, M.D., Ph.D.

Professor, University of California, San Francisco

SFARI Investigator, SFARI Scientific Review Board Website

Vikaas Sohal is a psychiatrist who leads a systems neuroscience laboratory at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). He received his undergraduate and master’s degrees in applied mathematics from Harvard University and the University of Cambridge, then completed his M.D./Ph.D. degrees at Stanford University, where he trained in electrophysiology with John Huguenard. While a psychiatry resident at Stanford, he also completed postdoctoral training with Karl Deisseroth. During this time, he carried out one of the first optogenetic studies of cortical circuits.

The Sohal laboratory uses a combination of computational, electrophysiological, optogenetic and imaging approaches to understand how circuits in the prefrontal cortex and other limbic regions generate emergent patterns of activity, and how these patterns of activity contribute to many aspects cognition and emotion. In this way, the Sohal laboratory aims to identify the circuit basis of, and new treatments for, neuropsychiatric conditions including schizophrenia, autism, anxiety and depression.

Sohal has received many awards, including a McKnight Memory and Cognitive Disorders award, the National Institutes of Health Director’s New Innovator Award and the A.E. Bennet Basic Science Research award from the Society for Biology Psychiatry.

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