Optogenetics: A Look Forward and a Look Back
In this keynote presentation, Karl Deisseroth discusses the history and future of optogenetic tools in neuroscience research.
Karl Deisseroth, MD, PhD
Karl Deisseroth is the D.H. Chen Professor of Bioengineering and of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator. He received his AB from Harvard, his MD from Stanford, and his PhD from Stanford in 1998. He launched his lab at Stanford in July 2004, where he and his team developed optogenetics and hydrogel-tissue chemistry. His lab has worked on developing and applying high-resolution tools for controlling and mapping specific well-defined elements within intact and fully-assembled biological systems. The lab develops and applies these and other tools (integrated with optical, electrophysiological, computational, molecular, and behavioral approaches) for the study of neural physiology and behavior in freely-moving mammals. His lab is interested both in natural behaviorally-relevant neural circuit dynamics, and in pathological dynamics underlying neuropsychiatric disease symptomatology and treatment. Twenty-three alumni from his lab (including SfN’s Optogenetics Training Series faculty Viviana Gradinaru, Talia Lerner, Ed Boyden, and Vikaas Sohal) have moved on to tenure-track faculty positions. Deisseroth was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2012. Deisseroth was the sole recipient (for optogenetics) of the 2010 Koetser Prize, 2010 Nakasone Prize, 2013 Lounsbery Prize, 2014 Dickson Prize in Science, 2015 Keio Prize, 2015 Lurie Prize, 2015 Albany Prize, 2015 Dickson Prize in Medicine, 2017 Redelsheimer Prize, 2017 Fresenius Prize, 2018 Eisenberg Prize, 2018 Leibinger Prize, and 2018 Kyoto Prize. Deisseroth also received several additional awards for optogenetics including the Zuelch Prize (2012), Perl Prize (2012), BRAIN Prize (2013), Pasarow Prize (2013), Breakthrough Prize (2015), BBVA Award (2016), Massry Prize (2017), Canada Gairdner Award (2018) and Harvey Prize from the Technion in Israel (2018).