Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Wenqin Luo Lab

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Research in the Luo lab is aimed at understanding the neurobiology of somatosensation. Broadly speaking, the lab uses the mouse as a model organism to focus on the following questions:

  • What are the functional circuits governing the expression of touch, pain, and itch behaviors, and what are the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying these circuits?
  • What salient molecular, behavioral, and cognitive features allow for the differentiation between responses to pain and itch?
  • How is somatosensory information coded and conveyed at anatomical, molecular, and circuit levels?
  • What molecular and circuit level changes are associated with the manifestation of pathological conditions of pain often seen in human disease?
  • What are the molecular and cellular mechanisms regulating the development of somatosensory circuits?

Our work employs a wide variety of cellular and molecular techniques, mouse genetic tools, mouse behavior assays, and physiological recordings to help us answer these questions. Please do not hesitate to contact members of our lab if you are interested in learning more about our research!

News and Announcements


A HUGE congratulations to postdoc Nathan Fried as well, who will be joining the Department of Biology at Rutgers University as an Assistant Professor! We're so proud of you!!


Congrats to Dr. Peter Dong, who successfully defended his doctoral thesis! We'll miss you immensely!


A HUGE congratulations to postdoc Ishmail Abdus-Saboor, who has accepted a tenure-track position as an assistant professor in the Department of Biology at Penn! Good luck, Ishmail—we'll see you around!