David D Ginty
David D Ginty, PhD
Edward R. and Anne G. Lefler Professor of Neurobiology

A fundamental question in neuroscience is how we perceive and respond to our environment. Our laboratory uses mouse molecular genetics, circuit mapping, and electrophysiological analyses to gain understanding of the development, organization, and function of neural circuits that underlie the sense of touch. Mouse molecular genetic approaches are used to identify, visualize, and functionally manipulate each of the physiologically defined classes of low-threshold mechanosensory neurons (LTMRs), the primary cutaneous sensory neurons that mediate the sense of touch. We have also gained genetic access to neurons that receive and process LTMR inputs in the spinal cord and propagate this information to the brain. Our current goals are to discover: 1) unique functions and properties of LTMR subtypes; 2) the organization and logic of synaptic connections between LTMR subtypes, spinal cord dorsal horn interneurons and projection neurons, and dorsal column nuclei neurons; 3) ascending pathways that underlie the perception of touch, 4) cellular and circuit level alterations that underlie touch sensitivity deficits in autism spectrum disorders and neuropathic pain, and; 5) mechanisms by which primary somatosensory neurons and touch circuit organization are established during development.

Publications View
Cortical responses to touch reflect subcortical integration of LTMR signals.
Authors: Authors: Emanuel AJ, Lehnert BP, Panzeri S, Harvey CD, Ginty DD.
Nature
View full abstract on Pubmed
Mechanoreceptor synapses in the brainstem shape the central representation of touch.
Authors: Authors: Lehnert BP, Santiago C, Huey EL, Emanuel AJ, Renauld S, Africawala N, Alkislar I, Zheng Y, Bai L, Koutsioumpa C, Hong JT, Magee AR, Harvey CD, Ginty DD.
Cell
View full abstract on Pubmed
The cellular and molecular basis of somatosensory neuron development.
Authors: Authors: Meltzer S, Santiago C, Sharma N, Ginty DD.
Neuron
View full abstract on Pubmed
The mechanosensory neurons of touch and their mechanisms of activation.
Authors: Authors: Handler A, Ginty DD.
Nat Rev Neurosci
View full abstract on Pubmed
Sex dependent reduction in mechanical allodynia in the sural-sparing nerve injury model in mice lacking Merkel cells.
Authors: Authors: Jeon SM, Chang D, Geske A, Ginty DD, Caterina MJ.
J Neurosci
View full abstract on Pubmed
Drosophila Fezf functions as a transcriptional repressor to direct layer-specific synaptic connectivity in the fly visual system.
Authors: Authors: Santiago IJ, Zhang D, Saras A, Pontillo N, Xu C, Chen X, Weirauch MT, Mistry M, Ginty DD, Pecot MY, Peng J.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A
View full abstract on Pubmed
Author Correction: Innervation of thermogenic adipose tissue via a calsyntenin 3ß-S100b axis.
Authors: Authors: <a href="https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/Profiles/profile/1234923">Zeng X</a>, <a href="https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/Profiles/profile/1246145">Zeng X</a>, Ye M, Resch JM, <a href="https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/Profiles/profile/1250277">Jedrychowski MP</a>, Hu B, <a href="https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/Profiles/profile/1252093">Lowell BB</a>, <a href="https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/Profiles/profile/1254041">Ginty DD</a>, <a href="https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/Profiles/profile/1254750">Spiegelman BM</a>.
Nature
View full abstract on Pubmed
Parallel ascending spinal pathways for affective touch and pain.
Authors: Authors: Choi S, Hachisuka J, Brett MA, Magee AR, Omori Y, Iqbal NU, Zhang D, DeLisle MM, Wolfson RL, Bai L, Santiago C, Gong S, Goulding M, Heintz N, Koerber HR, Ross SE, Ginty DD.
Nature
View full abstract on Pubmed
Meissner corpuscles and their spatially intermingled afferents underlie gentle touch perception.
Authors: Authors: Neubarth NL, Emanuel AJ, Liu Y, Springel MW, Handler A, Zhang Q, Lehnert BP, Guo C, Orefice LL, Abdelaziz A, DeLisle MM, Iskols M, Rhyins J, Kim SJ, Cattel SJ, Regehr W, Harvey CD, Drugowitsch J, Ginty DD.
Science
View full abstract on Pubmed
The emergence of transcriptional identity in somatosensory neurons.
Authors: Authors: Sharma N, Flaherty K, Lezgiyeva K, Wagner DE, Klein AM, Ginty DD.
Nature
View full abstract on Pubmed