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Dr. Peng Jiang Awarded Two Pilot Grants

The Rutgers Brain Health Institute, Rutgers-Newark and New Jersey Institute of Technology announced awardees in late January of their 2017 Pilot Grant Program in Neuroscience. Assistant Professor Peng Jiang, Assistant Professor, was awarded two of the eight pilot grants! The BHI-RUN-NJIT Pilot Grants in Neuroscience program is a multi-institutional funding program that provides pilot funding to foster basic and translational collaborative research between neuroscientists at Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, Rutgers New Brunswick, Rutgers Newark, and NJIT.  This 1-year pilot grant mechanism encourages cross-disciplinary collaborations by requiring that projects be directed by two or more principal investigators from different Rutgers schools or NJIT. Over the past two years the pilot program has funded 18 grants totaling $720,000. The goal of the funding program is to provide seed funding for new collaborative research projects to generate preliminary data necessary for extramural applications to federal, state and private funding agencies. The outcome data show that the 2015 pilot awardees have so far received nine extramural grant awards totaling $5.4 million.Learn more about the pilot grant program. 

CBN Retreat, January 2018

The department held a retreat open to faculty and students on Thursday, January 11, 2018 at the Multi-Purpose Room in the Cook Campus Center. The retreat featured seminars by Professors Kelvin Kwan, Qian Cai, Peng Jiang, David Margolis, Gabriella D'Arcangelo, Max Tischfield, and Victoria Abraira who spoke about their research. Later on, postdoctoral associates, fellows, and students presented on their research through a poster session. Thanks to all who came out!

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Welcome Drs. Abraira and Tischfield!

Join us in welcoming Drs. Victoria Abraira and Max Tischfield, joined the CBN faculty in January 2018 as Assistant Professors! Dr. Abraira graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in Biological Sciences and is coming to us from a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Tischfield is a graduate of the Rutgers College Honors Program in the Department of Cell Biology. He recently completed postdoctoral studies at Johns Hopkins Medical School and the Boston Children's hospital. Welcome Drs. Abraira and Tischfield!

Max     Vicky

CBN Retreat, January 2018

CBN will be hosting a retreat on Thursday, January 11, 2018 open to undergraduate students, graduate students postdoctoral associates, and faculty. The first half of the retreat will consist of presentations from CBN faculty and the latter half will be a poster presentation by graduate students and postdoctoral associates. Students will have the opportunity to meet with faculty and other students in the department. Click here for more information. Registration is free and open to all who are interested. 
To register, fill out the form here:

Dr. Kelvin Kwan Featured in Rutgers Today

Assistant Professor Kelvin Kwan's research on inner ear stem cells was recently featured in Rutgers Today! Read more about it here

2017 First Annual CBN Major Fair

CBN recently held our first annual CBN Major Fair on October 6, 2017 at the Livingston Student Center. The fair was geared towards students who are currently in the CBN major and those who are interested in becoming CBN majors.  It featured three presentations. One by Dr. Shu Chan Hsu, Undergraduate Director at CBN who introduced the major and gave a brief overview of the classes and requirements, followed by Dr. Greg Sobol of the Health Professions Office, who spoke about getting into Medical School, and the last one was by Joe Scott, the Associate Director of Career Services who presented about how to maximize efficiency in job and internship searching.

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After the presentations, students had the opportunity to visit booths, which included ones from CBN Student societies, such as RU WINS, RU Brain Society, and CBN Student Society. Students met and mingled with CBN faculty who were also there to meet with students. There was a great turnout, including a high school student who was looking into CBN as a potential major in college!

Dr. Gabriella D'Arcangelo Receives Recognition for DOD Award

At the 2016-2017 Chancellor's Celebration of Faculty Excellence held on Tuesday, October 17, 2017, Professor Gabriella D'Arcangelo was recognized for receiving an Idea Development Award from the Department of Defense, Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Research Program. This grant award supports current research in Professor D'Arcangelo's lab aimed at better understanding the cellular mechanisms of Tuberous Sclerosis Complex, a developmental brain disorder associated with autism and epilepsy.

Congratulations to Bitha Narayanan, recipient of 2017 Victor Stollar Award!

Congratulations to Bitha Narayanan, a graduate student in Dr. Lori Covey's lab, the recipient of the 2017 Victor Stollar Award! Bitha's research focuses on viral infections, the immune system, and immunotherapy. 

Dr. Bonnie Firestein Receives NJCBIR Grant

Congratulations to Dr. Bonnie Firestein for receiving the NJCBIR grant to begin 7/1/2017. It is one of only two large grants awarded, and the rest are pilot grants. 

Dr. Bonnie Firestein Leads Research on Lithium for Treating Brain Injury

Congratulations to Dr. Bonnie Firestein and her lab for their recently published paper on the usage of lithium in treating brain injuries, which has garnered a lot of attention

Congratulations CBN Class of 2017!

On Sunday, May 14th, over 171 students received BAs in Cell Biology and Neuroscience at the 251st Commencement.  

Our departmental celebration was held on May 11th where students received personalized engraved medallions. 


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Recipients of the 2017 Auerbach Achievement Award

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Congratulations and best wishes to all CBN graduates!

2017 CBN Honors Colloquium

Last Friday, April 21, 2017, twenty four CBN Honors students presented their work at the 2017 Honors Colloquium, a poster session where fellow students, faculty mentors, and other CBN faculty gathered to learn about the research they have been conducting in laboratories across campus. CBN Honors students pursue research in labs within the department of their major - the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience - and two other School of Arts and Sciences departments, Genetics and Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, and also Rutgers Biomedical and Health (RBHS). At the event, two students received awards for Best Poster:  Anna Chen and Parth K. Patel. 

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Congratulations Kiledjian Lab on Their Nature Article

Congratulations to Drs. Xiaobing Luo, Xinfu Jiao and Mike Kiledjian for their recent Article in Nature on m6Am epitranscriptomic regulation of mRNA stability.

            Also see Highlighted Preview by Weinberg and Gross.

Congratulations Hart and Kiledjian Labs on Their Cell Paper

Congratulations to Drs. Xinfu Jiao, Ron Hart and Mike Kiledjian for their upcoming paper in Cell (March 9th issue) on the identification of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) capped RNAs in mammalian cells.

Spring 2017 CBN Seminar Series Schedule Now Available

The CBN Seminar Series is held on most Fridays at 12 pm in Nelson D-406.  Everyone is welcome to attend.  Refreshments are served.
<Download Spring 2017 CBN Seminar Series Schedule>

Professor Kathleen Scott receives New Brunswick Chancellor Award for Faculty Excellence

Congratulations to Dr. Kathleen Scott for receiving the New Brunswick Chancellor Award for Faculty Excellence in Service.  Read more.

Kathy Scott

Recruiting Assistant Professor of Cell Biology and Neuroscience

The Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the level of Assistant Professor to develop an innovative research program focused on basic immunological processes relating to neurological disorders and/or cancer biology.

As part of the Division of Life Sciences, a group of Departments and Institutes that serves to provide opportunities for interdisciplinary research, the Department of CBN is home to an interactive, collegial faculty with broad interests encompassing immunology, molecular biology, stem cell biology and neurobiology.  Multiple opportunities for collaboration exist within the Department as well as with labs situated nearby at The Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, The Cancer Institute of New Jersey, The Child Health Institute and Princeton University.  Rutgers offers excellent facilities and competitive start-up packages.

Outstanding applicants will hold a Ph.D., MD or equivalent degree and have extensive postdoctoral training in immunology or a related field. A strong track record of achievement is required.  The successful candidate will be expected to teach courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels in the fields of immunology, cell biology or neuroscience and establish and maintain a productive extramurally funded research program.

Interested individuals are encouraged to apply online with a curriculum vitae, a brief statement of research plans, and the names, addresses, and contact information of three individuals who will provide a letter of reference.

Applications should be submitted as soon as possible but not later than December 15, 2017. Late applications will be considered only if positions remain available.

Rutgers University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

Dr. Long-Jun Wu Featured in "Rutgers Today"

CBN Assistant Professor Long-Jun Wu's work is featured in an article entitled, "Targeting Brain Cells to Alleviate Neuropathic Pain," in the August 8, 2016 issue of Rutgers Today.

Dr. Joanna Burger weighs in over Oysters vs. Red Knots

In Cape May County, there is a growing tension between economics and ecology.  Dr. Joanna Burger is quoted in The Philadelphia Inquirer article N.J. decision ignites Shore strife: Oysters vs. red knots.

Congratulations CBN Class of 2016!

On Sunday, March 15, over 200 students will be receiving BAs in Cell Biology and Neuroscience at the 250th Anniversary Commencement

Our departmental celebration was held on March 12th where students received personalized engraved medallions containing an image from Dr. Robin Davis' laboratory.

PanoCBN faculty and students dined together before the festivities began

CBN faculty and graduating students wearing their CBN medallions.

 Congratulations and best wishes to all CBN graduates!


2016 CBN Honors Colloquium

Last Friday, April 22nd, thirty-two CBN Honors students presented their work at the 2016 CBN Honors Colloquium, a poster session where fellow students, faculty mentors, and other CBN faculty gathered to learn about the research they have been conducting in laboratories across campus.  CBN Honors students pursue research in labs within the deparment of their major -- the Deparment of Cell Biology and Neuroscience -- and two other School of Arts and Sciences departments, Genetics and Molecular Biology and Chemistry), and also Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS).   At the event, two students received awards for Best Poster: Michael Lazaropoulos (Ron Hart's Lab) and Sanjana Matta (Long-Jun Wu's Lab).

LSB Atrium was decorated with
CBN Honors Student research posters.


2016 Best Poster Winners
with CBN Chair, Mike Kiledjian

Dr. David Margolis awarded grant from Rutgers Brain Health Institute

Under a new pilot grant program offered by the Brain Health Institute at Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, Rutgers University–Newark, and New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) designed to drive new collaborations, neuroscientists from various campuses and units at Rutgers and NJIT were recently awarded nine, one-year research grants totaling $360,000. The projects are expected to generate preliminary data that can then be used in applying for federal, state, and private grants. Each project is directed by at least two principal investigators from different schools. Collaborative teams submitted 27 applications for review by an external scientific review committee and an internal programmatic review committee. Nine $40,000 awards were made. Seven of the nine funded teams have already taken their pilot grant proposal and submitted new applications to external funding agencies. Learn more about the projects.

CBN Professor Margolis and Professor James Tepper (RU-Newark) received an award for their project entitled "Role of Sensory Cortex in Behavioral Response Inhibition."  Beyond its traditional role as an early-stage relay of tactile information, the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) has an increasingly appreciated role in sensorimotor behavior and motor control. Our proposed experiments explore the hypothesis that S1 is involved in sensory-driven behavioral response inhibition via differential connectivity with neural circuits of the striatum. Response inhibition, the ability to stop a goal-directed behavior in the appropriate context, is fundamental for the cognitive control of behavior. Impaired response inhibition underlies impulsive behaviors present across many neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders, such as Tourette’s syndrome, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and addiction disorders. While current thinking holds that signaling from prefrontal cortex to striatum mediates response inhibition, this idea may be too simplistic; other cortical areas including S1 provide massive projections to the dorsal striatum (DStr) that could play important functional roles, especially during specific behavioral contexts. The proposed research will investigate the functional circuitry of S1-mediated response inhibition using an integrative experimental approach including optogenetics, mouse behavior and electrophysiology. The results have the potential not only to change current thinking about the role of S1-DStr projections in behavioral control, but could also identify S1-DStr signaling as a potential therapeutic target in disorders involving impulsive behaviors.




Dr. Mike Kiledjian awarded grant from Cure SMA

Cure SMA has awarded a $140,000 research grant to Dr. Kiledjian, CBN Chair and Distinguished Pofessor. SMA (spinal muscular atrophy) is a disease that robs people of physical strength by affecting the motor nerve cells in the spinal cord, taking away the ability to walk, eat, or breathe. It is the number one genetic cause of death for infants.

Joanna Burger featured in Risk Analysis paper

CBN Distinguished Professor Joanna Burger is featured in an article entitled, "Joanna Burger:  Respect for All Living Things," in the December 2015 issue of Risk Analysis.  [Download the Article]

Rutgers-New Brunswick is ranked #2 for health professions

Recently, Rutgers University-New Brunswick was ranked #2 in the nation for best schools to study health professions.  CBN professor, Bruce Babiarz, is featured in an article discussing the important role the Health Professions Office plays in students' lives.

Professor Melitta Schachner to be awarded prestigious honorary degree

Dr. Melitta Schachner has been selected to receive a prestigious honorary doctorate degree from the University of Heidelberg—the first such honor for extraordinary achievement in the life sciences that the institution has awarded in 50 years.

In 1976, Schachner became the first chair of the Department of Neurobiology at Heidelberg, where she also led the development of the Center for Neuroscience. She later established a Center for the Study of Neurobiology at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich.

A member of the German Academy of Sciences, Schachner has focused her research and written prolifically on the cellular and molecular mechanisms that underlie development, maintenance, and modifications of the adult central nervous system. She has authored more than 800 articles in peer-reviewed journals. In 1965, as a summer student at the California Institute of Technology, she studied with Max Delbrück, the last person to receive the honor that Schachner will receive in Heidelberg in November.

Congratulations, Dr. Schachner!

Dr. Ronald Hart directs bioinformatics core for $3.3M NIH epigenetics study

The National Center for Complementary & Integrative Health (NCCIH) of the National Institutes of Health has awarded Professor Ah-Ng Tony Kong, Distinguished Professor, Glaxo Endowed Chair in Pharmaceutics and Graduate Director, a 5-year RO1 grant of $3,335,313 for the project, “Epigenetic mechanisms of indole-3-carbinol (I3C)/diindolylemthane (DIM) and triterpenoids in prevention of prostate inflammation and related disease.” The I3C/DIM found abundantly in cruciferous vegetables and triterpenoid ursolic acid (UA) from medicinal plants, fruits and vegetables such as blueberries, cranberries, beets, and mushrooms, are commonly used as botanical dietary supplements.  This grant will examine how chronic inflammatory processes can drive changes of inflammatory epigenome and investigate how botanical/natural products can modify these inflammatory epigenomic alterations resulting in suppression of inflammation and its related diseases including cancer in the prostate. In addition, the Analytical Core directed by Drs. Ronald P. Hart (Cell Biology), Brian T. Buckley (EOHSI) and Michael Verzi (Genetics) will develop the latest technology in next-generation sequencing coupled with bioinformatics, and in vivo metabolism, pharmacokinetics-pharmacodynamics studies of botanicals using LCMS technology.  Better understanding of the molecular mechanism of I3C, DIM and UA via epigenetic alterations can enhance the use of I3C, DIM and UA in disease prevention and can potentially benefit thousands.

<Read the official announcement>

Congratulations to our Recently Promoted Professors

Two CBN professors were promoted on July 1st.  Mike Kiledjian, CBN Chair, was promoted to Distinguished Professor and Ping Xie was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure. 

Congratulations to the CBN Class of 2015!

We wish you success in all you do.

CBN Celebration 2015 rev

Congratulations to Professor Melitta Schachner

Congratulations to Dr. Melitta Schachner for being ranked as the third most cited researcher in China in the fields of biochemistry, genetics, and molecular biology.

Congratulations to Professor Ping Xie on her promotion

Congratulations to Dr. Ping Xie on her promotion to Associate Professor with tenure.

Spring 2015 Seminar Schedule

The Spring 2015 Seminar Schedule is available for download.

Graduate, Law, and Health Professions School Fair

Wednesday, November 05, 2014 • 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Location: Rutgers Student Center

Admissions officers, students, and alumni come together to discuss graduate and law school opportunities. With over 100 programs expected to attend, this fair will be a great networking opportunity for both candidates and admissions officers alike. This event is only open to Rutgers University students and alumni from all majors. Attendees should dress professionally.

RECRUITER INFORMATION: Login to learn more and register here.
STUDENT INFORMATION: View a listing of attending schools

Interview with Dr. Joanna Burger

Read an excellent interview with Joanna Burger, CBN professor and, as described below, a "globetrotting ornithologist."

Wecome Message from the Chair

Welcome back to the start of a new academic year!

On behalf of the Cell Biology and Neuroscience faculty, welcome to the 2014-2015 school year at Rutgers!  Our faculty are committed to providing you with the highest quality education and research opportunities.  If you are interested in doing research in a CBN laboratory, please visit the CBN faculty research descriptions to find someone whose work interests you and then contact that person directly.  If you have a question about registering for a course or you need a special permission number, please contact the DLS Office of Undergraduate Instruction at 848-445-2075.  To stay informed about the latest CBN news, visit our Facebook page and “like us.”

We are pleased you have chosen to major in CBN and hope you have a wonderful year.

-Dr. Mike Kiledjian, CBN Chair

Fall 2014 CBN Seminar Series Schedule

September 19, 2014 – Qian Cai, MD, PhD – Rutgers University
September 26, 2014 – Yuk Fai Leung, PhD – Purdue University
October 10, 2014   –  Dilek Colak, PhD – Cornell University
October 17, 2014  –  Edwin Rubel, PhD – University of Washington – Seattle
October 24, 2014  –  Long-Jun Wu, PhD – Rutgers University
October 31, 2014 –  Shi-Yong Sun, PhD ­– Emory Univ. School of Medicine
December 12, 2014 – Adam Kepecs, PhD – Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Seminars meet from 12 - 1 pm in Nelson Labs B-228.    

Download Fall 2014 CBN Seminar Series Schedule

We are on Facebook!

Please LIKE our Facebook page to stay informed about departmental information, news and events.

CBN scientists investigate excess protein production in brain cells

In today’s online edition of Nature Neuroscience, professors Karl Herrup, Ronald Hart and Jiali Li in the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, and Alexander Kusnecov, associate professor in behavioral and systems neuroscience in the Department of Psychology, provide new information about A-T disease, a rare genetic childhood disorder that occurs in an estimated 1 in 40,000 births.

Recruiting Assistant Professor of Cryo-Electron Microscopy

The Center for Integrative Proteomics Research and the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, seek to hire an outstanding tenure track assistant professor in the area of Cryo-Electron Microscopy. Applicants must have a Ph.D. and/or M.D., a distinguished record of scholarship, a strong commitment to excellence in teaching, and the leadership abilities to develop and support a world-class research program. The Center is located in a newly built 75,000-square-foot facility dedicated to fostering interdisciplinary research in the biological and biomedical sciences using complementary quantitative tools of measurement and analysis. The Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience is part of the Division of Life Sciences, a group of Rutgers Departments and Institutes that represent further opportunities for collaboration. Together the Center and the Department will provide access to a broad array of excellent research facilities and a competitive start-up package.

The Center and the Department are located adjacent to the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, and are less than one hour from New York City and Philadelphia.

Interested individuals should apply online through the Department’s recruitment website ( with a curriculum vitae, a brief statement of research plans, and the names, addresses, and contact information of three individuals who will provide a letter of reference.

The Search Committee will begin its deliberations on October 15, 2013.  Applications received after December 1, 2013 will only be considered in exceptional circumstances.

Rutgers University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

Epigenetic link to neurodegeneration in ataxia?

karlherrupEpigenetic link to neurodegeneration in ataxia? Professor Karl Herrup recently reported in Nature Medicine that children born with ataxia telangiactasia, a disorder known to be related to DNA repair, can also be linked to proteins that change epigenetic regulation in neurons. Results demonstrated that inhibiting HDAC4 protein in a mouse model was able to reduce symptoms. Read the announcement of Prof. Herrup's discover in a recent Rutgers Today article.

A new model of Alzheimer's Disease

karlherrup2 A new model of Alzheimer's Disease Professor Karl Herrup recently published a novel hypothesis to explain the etiology of Alzheimer's Disease. Appearing in the December 15, 2010 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, Prof. Herrup's hypothesis is that AD is triggered by three steps, starting with an initiating injury, continuing with an inflammatory response, and resulting in a change in cell state. This model places the so-called "amyloid theory" in context of a larger progression of events, helping to explain why therapies targeting amyloid may be insufficient to ameliorate symptoms. Read the profile of Dr. Herrup and his model in a recent Rutgers news release.

NJ Autism Grant Awarded: Cypin and Neuroligin-1 in synaptogenesis

firestein2NJ Autism Grant Awarded: Cypin and Neuroligin-1 in synaptogenesis Prof. Bonnie Firestein was recently awarded a grant from the New Jersey Governor's Council for Medical Research and Treatment of Autism. The project will determine how cypin and Neuroligin-1 (NLGN-1) regulate excitatory synapse formation, since creating the appropriate number and type of connections is essential for proper brain development and function. Defects in synapse formation underlie a number of cognitive disorders, including autism and autism spectrum disorders.

NJ Autism Grant Awarded: Reelin protein and autism

darcangeloNJ Autism Grant Awarded: Reelin protein and autism Prof. Gabriella D'Arcangelo was recently awarded a grant from the New Jersey Governor's Council for Medical Research and Treatment of Autism. The project seeks to investigate the Reelin signaling pathway in synapse formation in developing mouse brain. Autism is believed to be associated with altered synaptic function.

Dr. Margolis cowrites editorial

Dr. David Margolis has co-authored an op-ed piece about President Obama's Brain Initiative.

Dr. Alice Liu's Byrne Seminar

Dr. Alice Liu teaches a Byrne Seminar, providing laboratory research experience to Freshmen. Watch now.

Dr. Robin Davis leads the effort to create the Rutgers Neuroscience Consortium

Drs. Robin Davis, Suhayl Dhib-Jalbut and Cheryl Dreyfus have been involved in establishing the Rutgers Neuroscience Consortium.

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