Dr Jin Huang

Lecturer
Biomedical Sciences, School of Medical Sciences

Telephone 9351 9065

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Research interests

Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness worldwide. It is a group of eye diseases where raised intraocular pressure (IOP) occurs over time, leading to visual impairment, and eventually blindness. This raised IOP causes the progressive death of the output nerve cells (neurons) of the eye called retinal ganglion cells. Despite substantial research on this disease, the pathophysiology of glaucoma is not fully understood.

The retina is made up of light sensitive tissue located at the back of the eye. It contains neurons that are important in the first stage of visual perception and visual processing. One of these neurons is called ganglion cells. They project from the retina to other regions within the brain (such as the lateral geniculate nucleus), and are important in the modification of complex visual signals.

To understand the pathophysiological changes in the properties of ganglion cells in glaucoma, we are using a mouse model. Techniques involved are intracellular recording techniques such as patch clamp and confocal microscopy. We will examine the properties of ganglion cells at different time points to allow comparisons before the development of glaucoma and during glaucoma with peak IOP. We will focus on the large alpha ganglion cells and characterise their basic physiological responses, which provide information about their health and behaviour such as spontaneous activity, contrast sensitivity and receptive field organisation. Thus, this project will contribute to our understanding of the effects of raised IOP characteristic of glaucoma on ganglion cell properties that ultimately leads to their death.

We published a video article which provides an overview of the techniques used and some of the projects we are working on.

For full access of the video and paper, click on the link below and type in your Unikey and password:

http://www.jove.com.ezproxy1.library.usyd.edu.au/video/50400/implementing-dynamic-clamp-with-synaptic-artificial-conductances

For full access of the video and partial access of the paper, click the link below:

http://www.jove.com/video/50400/implementing-dynamic-clamp-with-synaptic-artificial-conductances

This research is done in collaboration with Dr Dario Protti in the Discipline of Physiology.

Teaching and supervision

Dr Huang teaches Neuroanatomy, Neurophysiology and Anatomy to undergraduate and postgraduate students. Dr Huang is a member of the Learning and Teaching Committee of Discipline of Biomedical Science and is the subject/unit co-ordinator for: Neuroscience (BIOS1171, Semester 1); Clinically Based Neuroscience (BIOS5091).

Outreach activities in local high schools:

Dr Huang leads a team of Scientists and promote Brain Awareness to high school students. Outreach activities occur March (Brain Awareness Week) and August (Science Week). If you have studied Neuroscience, love to talk to kids and are willing to volunteer, please email Jin. If you are interested in organising a similar event, fell free to contact Jin. She is happy to forward you the program.

"Scientists in Schools" partner schools are Sydney International Grammar School and Condell Park High School.

Student feeback score for 2015: 4.6/5 for both schools

Selected grants

2014

  • Understanding retinal ganglion cell function in glaucoma; Protti D, Huang J; Rebecca L Cooper Medical Research Foundation/Equipment Grant.

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Protti, D., Di Marco, S., Huang, J., Vonhoff, C., Nguyen, V., Solomon, S. (2014). Inner retinal inhibition shapes the receptive field of retinal ganglion cells in primate. The Journal of Physiology, 592(1), 49-65. [More Information]
  • Huang, J., Stiefel, K., Protti, D. (2013). Implementing dynamic clamp with synaptic and artificial conductances in mouse retinal ganglion cells. Journal of Visualized Experiments, 75, 1-7. [More Information]
  • Wang, C., Huang, J., Bardy, C., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2010). Influence of 'feedback' signals on spatial integration in receptive fields of cat area 17 neurons. Brain Research, 1328, 34-48. [More Information]
  • Bardy, C., Huang, J., Wang, C., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2009). 'Top-down' influences of ipsilateral or contralateral postero-temporal visual cortices on the extra-classical receptive fields of neurons in cat's striate cortex. Neuroscience, 158(2), 951-968. [More Information]
  • Wang, C., Bardy, C., Huang, J., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2009). Contrast dependence of center and surround integration in primary visual cortex of the cat. Journal of Vision, 9(20), 1-15. [More Information]
  • Huang, J., Wang, C., Dreher, B. (2007). The effects of reversible inactivation of postero-temporal visual cortex on neuronal activities in cat's area 17. Brain Research, 1138, 111-128. [More Information]
  • Bardy, C., Huang, J., Wang, C., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2006). 'Simplification' of responses of complex cells in cat striate cortex: suppressive surrounds and 'feedback' inactivation. The Journal of Physiology, 574(3), 731-750. [More Information]

2014

  • Protti, D., Di Marco, S., Huang, J., Vonhoff, C., Nguyen, V., Solomon, S. (2014). Inner retinal inhibition shapes the receptive field of retinal ganglion cells in primate. The Journal of Physiology, 592(1), 49-65. [More Information]

2013

  • Huang, J., Stiefel, K., Protti, D. (2013). Implementing dynamic clamp with synaptic and artificial conductances in mouse retinal ganglion cells. Journal of Visualized Experiments, 75, 1-7. [More Information]

2010

  • Wang, C., Huang, J., Bardy, C., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2010). Influence of 'feedback' signals on spatial integration in receptive fields of cat area 17 neurons. Brain Research, 1328, 34-48. [More Information]

2009

  • Bardy, C., Huang, J., Wang, C., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2009). 'Top-down' influences of ipsilateral or contralateral postero-temporal visual cortices on the extra-classical receptive fields of neurons in cat's striate cortex. Neuroscience, 158(2), 951-968. [More Information]
  • Wang, C., Bardy, C., Huang, J., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2009). Contrast dependence of center and surround integration in primary visual cortex of the cat. Journal of Vision, 9(20), 1-15. [More Information]

2007

  • Huang, J., Wang, C., Dreher, B. (2007). The effects of reversible inactivation of postero-temporal visual cortex on neuronal activities in cat's area 17. Brain Research, 1138, 111-128. [More Information]

2006

  • Bardy, C., Huang, J., Wang, C., Fitzgibbon, T., Dreher, B. (2006). 'Simplification' of responses of complex cells in cat striate cortex: suppressive surrounds and 'feedback' inactivation. The Journal of Physiology, 574(3), 731-750. [More Information]

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