Institute Institute Anatomie und… Abteilungen CHS-Gruppen Agarwal

Agarwal group (CHS)

Group Leader

Dr. Amit Agarwal

Anatomie und Zellbiologie
Im Neuenheimer Feld 307
69120 Heidelberg
Tel. 06221-54-6115
Fax 06221-54-8676

Group Members

Dr. Felipe Bodaleo Torres
Ilknur Çoban  (PhD student)
Ram Dereddi  (PhD student)
Frédéric Fiore (PhD student)
Agnes Golombek  (Secretary)
Darshana Kalita (PhD student)
Dr. Rangel Silva

Research Summary

Neuron-Glia Interactions in Neural Circuits

In the Agarwal laboratory, we combine optophysiological and advanced microscopic techniques, novel mouse genetics tools, single-cell gene expression methodologies, and the machine-learning based computational approaches to decipher cellular connectivity and molecular pathways by which neurons and glia interact, interconnect and integrate in the neural circuits. The focal aim of the laboratory is to understand the functional significance of these neuron-glia connections in the neural networks, and their role in cognition, learning, and memory. We study how disturbances in these fine cellular interactions can contribute to various neurological disorders ranging from multiple

Curriculum vitae

Education and Research

2017 - Present Institute for Anatomy and Cell Biology, Heidelberg University, Germany The Chica Heinz Schaller Research Group Leader

2016 - 2017 Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA Junior Faculty (Research Associate), Department of Neuroscience

2010 - 2016 Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA Post-doctoral fellow, Department of Neuroscience

2005 - 2010 Max-Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine and Georg-August University, Göttingen, Germany Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Neuroscience

2003 - 2005 International Max-Planck Research School for Neurosciences and Georg-August University, Göttingen, Germany Master of Science (M.Sc.), Neuroscience

Honors and Awards

2017 - 2022 Chica and Heinz Schaller Research Group Leader Award, Heidelberg, Germany

2016 - 2018 NARSAD Young Investigator Grant, Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, USA

2016 Anuradha Rao Memorial Award, Cell Press/Society for Neuroscience, USA

2016 W. Barry Wood Jr. Young Investigator Award, Johns Hopkins University, USA

2016 FENS-IBRO/PERC Travel Award, FENS Forum 2016, Copenhagen, Denmark

2013 Best Poster award at 3rd Tykeson Fellows Conference on Multiple Sclerosis, USA

2011 - 2014 National Multiple Sclerosis Society Post-Doctoral Fellowship, New York, USA

2004 - 2008 Max-Planck Society Stipend for Graduate Students, Germany

2003 - 2004 International Max-Planck Research School Stipend, Germany

Professional Services and memberships

2018 – present Member, German Neuroscience Society, Germany

2015 – present Editorial Board member: Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience, Matters Journal

2015 Ad hoc grant reviewer for Spinal Cord Research Foundation, Wings for Life, Austria

2010 – present Ad hoc reviewer: Journal of Neuroscience, Journal of Neuroscience Research, Molecular Medicine, Frontiers of Molecular Neuroscience, PLOS-One

2010 – present Member, Society for Neuroscience, USA

Selected Publications

1. Larson V.A., Mironova Y., Vanderpool K.G., Waisman A., Rash J.E., Agarwal A.*, Bergles D.E*. (2018) Oligodendrocytes control potassium accumulation in white matter and seizure susceptibility. Elife. Mar 29;7 (*shared corresponsding author).  

2. Agarwal, A., Wu,, P.H., Hughes, E.G., Fukaya, M. Tischfield, M.A., Langseth, A.J., Wirtz, D., Bergles,, D.E. (2017) Transient opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore induces microdomain calcium transients in astrocyte processes. Neuron 93(3): 587-605 (Highlighted as cover art)  

3. Goebbels, S., Wieser, G., Pieper, A., Spitzer, S., Weege, B., Yan, K., Edgar, J., Yagensky, O., Wichert, S., Agarwal, A., Karram, K., Rossner, M., Tessier-Lavigne M., Káradóttir, R., Nave, K.A. (2017) A neuronal PIP3-dependent program of oligodendrocyte precursor recruitment and myelination. Nature Neuroscience 10.1038/nn.4425  

4. Perea, G., Gómez, R., Mederos, S., Covelo, A., Ballesteros, J.J., Schlosser, L., Hernández-Vivanco, A., Martín-Fernández, M., Quintana, R., Rayan, A., Díez, A., Fuenzalida, M., Agarwal, A., Bergles, D.E., Bettler, B., Manahan-Vaughan, D., Martín, E.D., Kirchhoff, F., Araque, A., (2017) Activity-dependent switch of GABAergic inhibition into glutamatergic excitation in astrocyte-neuron networks. eLife. doi: 10.7554/eLife.20362.  

5. Kim, Y.S., Anderson, M., Park, K., Zheng, Q., Agarwal, A., Gong, C., Saijilafu, Young, L., He, S., LaVinka P.C., Zhou, F., Bergles, D.E., Hanani, M., Guan, Y., Spray, D.C., and Dong, X. (2016) Coupled activation of primary sensory neurons contributes to chronic pain. Neuron 91(5): 1085-96  

6. Zhang-Hooks, Y., Agarwal, A., Mishina, M., Bergles, D.E. (2016) NMDA receptors enhance spontaneous activity and promote neuronal survival in the developing cochlea. Neuron 89(2): 337-50  

7. Wang, H.C., Lin, C.C., Cheung, R., Zhang-Hooks, Y., Agarwal, A., Ellis-Davies, G., Rock, J., Bergles, D.E. (2015) Spontaneous activity of cochlear hair cells triggered by fluid secretion mechanism in adjacent support cells. Cell 163(6): 1348-59  

8. Otsu, Y., Couchman, K., Lyons, D.G., Collot, M., Agarwal, A., Mallet, J-M., Pfrieger, F.W., Bergles, D.E., Charpak, S. (2015) Calcium dynamics of astrocyte during neurovascular coupling. Nature Neuroscience. 18(2): 210-8  

9. Agarwal, A., Zhang, M., Trembak-Duff, I., Unterbarnscheidt, T., Radyushkin, K., Dibaj, P., Martins de Souza, D., Boretius, S., Brzózka, M.M., Steffens, H., Berning, S., Teng, Z., Gummert, M., Tantra, M., Guest, P.C., Willig, K.I., Frahm, J., Hell, S.W., Bahn, S., Rossner, M.J., Nave, K.-A., Ehrenreich, H., Zhang, W., and Schwab, M.H. (2014) Dysregulated expression of neuregulin-1 by cortical pyramidal neurons disrupts synaptic plasticity. Cell Reports. 8(4): 1130-45.  

10. Paukert, M*., Agarwal, A*., Cha, J., Doze, V.A., Kang, J.U., Bergles D.E. (2014) Norepinephrine controls astroglial responsiveness to local circuit activity. Neuron. 82(6): 1263-70 (*Equal contribution).  

11. Issa, J.B., Haeffele, B.D., Agarwal, A., Bergles, D.E., Young, E.D., Yue, D.T. (2014) Multiscale Optical Ca2+ Imaging of Tonal Organization in Mouse Auditory Cortex. Neuron. 83(4): 944-59  

12. Agarwal, A., Bergles, D.E. (2014) Astrocyte morphology is controlled by neuron-derived FGF. Neuron. 83(2): 255-7  

13. Agarwal, A., Dibaj P., Kassmann C.M., Goebbels S., Nave, K.-A., and Schwab, M. H. (2012) In vivo imaging and non-invasive ablation of pyramidal neurons in adult NEX-CreERT2 mice. Cerebral Cortex. 22(7): 1473-86 (Highlighted as cover art)  

14. Brinkmann, B. G*., Agarwal, A.*, Sereda, M. W., Garratt, A.N., Müller, T., Wende, H., Nawaz, S., Humml, C., Velanac, V., Radyushkin, K., Goebbels, S., Fischer, T. M., Lai, C., Ehrenreich, H., Birchmeier, C., Schwab, M. H., and Nave, K.-A. (2008) Neuregulin-1/ErbB signaling serves distinct functions in myelination of the peripheral and central nervous system. Neuron. 59(4): 581-95. (*Equal contribution). (Highlighted by Faculty of 1000)  


2016 – 2018 NARSAD Young Investigator Grant, Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, USA

2017 – 2022 Research Group funded by Chica and Heinz Schaller Foundation