Recent advances in optogenetics and pharmacogenetics

Gary Aston-Jones, Karl Deisseroth

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Optogenetics with microbial opsin genes, and pharmacogenetics with designer receptors, represent potent and versatile experimental modalities that can be integrated with each other as well as with a rich diversity of synergistic methods to provide fundamental opportunities in neuroscience research. The 7th Annual Brain Research Meeting in New Orleans in October 2012, Optogenetics and Pharmacogenetics in Neuronal Function and Dysfunction, brought together leading researchers that have developed and used these tools to explore a wide range of questions in nervous system function and dysfunction. This special issue of Brain Research includes articles by speakers in this meeting and others, which together synthesize and summarize the state of the art for optogenetics and designer receptors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Optogenetics (7th BRES)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalBrain research
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


  • Autonomic function
  • Channelrhodopsin
  • Designer receptor
  • Motivation/cognition
  • Neurotransmitter signaling
  • Optogenetics
  • Pharmacogenetics
  • Sensory function
  • Translational neuroscience
  • Viral transduction


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