Maltesh Kambali, PhD

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.


Dr. Maltesh Kambali is a Postdoctoral Researcher in Prof. Uwe Rudolph’s research group in the Department of Comparative Biosciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Having earned a Ph.D. at NIMHANS, India, his doctoral research concentrated on exploring the brain mechanisms associated with the impact of early-life stress on cognitive functioning in adult. In his postdoctoral research, his primary research focus is investigating the neuropathological mechanisms resulting from genetic mutations in neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD). His research has provided a compelling link between increased glycine decarboxylase expression in mice and the development of a schizophrenia-like phenotype. He is currently exploring the cognitive and behavioral consequences of rare genomic copy number variations (CNVs) which are risk factors for the development of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and schizophrenia. His preliminary studies show that certain CNVs result in cognitive impairments. He aspires to continue to identify neuropathological mechanisms underlying these CNVs. To do so, he will utilize in vivo calcium imaging to capture neuronal ensemble dynamics in PFC during an ongoing behavioral task. Furthermore, he plans to evaluate the potential of repurposed FDA-approved drugs for NDD treatment.

BRAIN Funded Projects

Identification of the neuronal ensemble activity as a biomarker for the evaluation of treatment strategies for neurodevelopmental disorders

Aims of the study: To evaluate neuronal ensemble dynamics in the prefrontal cortex as a biomarker for increased risk of NDD, and to assess the potential of bezafibrate, an activator of the mitochondrial biogenesis protein PGC1a, and of metformin for the treatment of NDD.

Selected Publications

M Kambali, Y Li, P Unichenko, J Feria, J Liu, P McGuiness, J Cobb, K Brown, M Wang, R Nagarajan, J Lyu, V Vongsouth, C J. Jackson, E Engin, G E. Homanics, V Y. Bolshakov, C Henneberger, U Rudolph. A marker chromosome in psychosis identifies glycine decarboxylase (GLDC) as a novel regulator of neuronal and synaptic function in the hippocampus. doi: 10.1101/2023.05.29.542745

J Lyu, R Nagarajan, M Kambali, M Wang, U Rudolph. Selective inhibition of somatostatin-positive dentate hilar interneurons induces age-related cellular changes and cognitive dysfunction. PNAS Nexus, 2023 doi: 10.1093/pnasnexus/pgad134

MY Kambali, K Anshu, BM Kutty, RS Muddashetty, TR Laxmi. Early maternal separation stress implications on attentional ability, spatial learning and social behavior. Experimental brain research (2019) doi: 10.1007/s00221-019-05567-2

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