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Shane Crandall, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Physiology *
Biomedical Physical Sciences Rm 2197
Office: 517-884-5055
Lab: 517-884-5031
Crandall Lab


B.A. 2005 Boston University, Boston, MA
Ph.D. 2012 University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, IL
Postdoc 2012-2017 Brown University, Providence, RI

Research positions are open for postdoctoral researchers, Ph.D. students, and undergraduates interested in studying neural circuits in the neocortex and the thalamus.

Research Interests

Our primary goal is to understand how brain circuits control our sensations. Much of our work focuses on the neocortex and thalamus. These areas interest us because they are dynamic partners in the processing of neural signals essential for sensory perception, movement, and cognition. Moreover, their abnormal communication has been implicated in several disease states such as epilepsy and neurodevelopmental disorders. We aim to gain a holistic understanding of forebrain processing through studies at multiple scales: namely, the basic properties of individual neurons, their synapses, and the circuits they form with other neurons. Towards this goal, we use cutting-edge electrophysiological and optical tools both in vitro and in awake behaving preparations. Our findings should provide much-needed insight into how neural circuits in the human brain process sensory signals and how they fail in disease. 

Current projects in the laboratory include those focused on understanding the dynamic properties of corticothalamic circuits, the mechanisms underlying “top-down” influences on somatosensory processing, and the neurological manifestations of Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC).


Selected Publications

Dash, S, Autio, DA,  and Crandall, SR. State-dependent modulation of activity in distinct layer 6 corticothalamic neurons in barrel cortex of awake miceJournal of Neuroscience, 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2219-21.2022.

Martinetti, L.E., Bonekamp, K.E., Autio, D.M., Kim, H.H., and Crandall, S.R. (2022). Short-Term Facilitation of Long-Range Corticocortical Synapses Revealed by Selective Optical StimulationCerebral cortex 32, 1932-1949.

Wundrach, D., Martinetti, L.E., Stafford, A.M., Bilinovich, S.M., Angara, K., Prokop, J.W., Crandall, S.R., and Vogt, D. (2020). A Human TSC1 Variant Screening Platform in Gabaergic Cortical Interneurons for Genotype to Phenotype AssessmentsFrontiers in molecular neuroscience 13, 573409.

Crandall SR, Patrick SL, Cruikshank SJ, and Connors BW. Infrabarrels are layer 6 circuit modules in the barrel cortex that link long-range inputs and outputsCell reports 21, 3065-3078.

Crandall SR and Connors BW. Diverse ensembles of inhibitory interneuronsNeuron 90: 4-6, 2016.

Crandall SR, Cruikshank SJ, and Connors BW. A corticothalamic switch: controlling the thalamus with dynamic synapsesNeuron 86: 768-782, 2015.

Normand EA, Crandall SR, Thorn CA, Murphy EM, Voelcker B, Browning C, Machan JT, Moore CI, Connors BW, and Zervas M. Temporal and mosaic Tsc1 deletion in the developing thalamus disrupts thalamocortical circuitry, neural function, and behaviorNeuron 78: 895-909, 2013.

Crandall SR and Cox CL. Thalamic microcircuits: presynaptic dendrites form two feedforward inhibitory pathways in thalamusJournal of Neurophysiology 110: 470-480, 2013.

Crandall SR and Cox CL. Local dendrodendritic inhibition regulates fast synaptic transmission in visual thalamusJournal of Neuroscience 32: 2513-2522, 2012.

Crandall SR, Govindaiah G, and Cox CL. Low-threshold Ca2+ current amplifies distal dendritic signaling in thalamic reticular neuronsJournal of Neuroscience 30: 15419-15429, 2010.

Govindaiah G, Wang T, Gillette MU, Crandall SR, and Cox CL. Regulation of inhibitory synapses by presynaptic D(4) dopamine receptors in thalamusJournal of Neurophysiology 104: 2757-2765, 2010.

->Complete list of published work<-

Main Office
Department of Physiology
 Biomedical & Physical Sciences Building
567 Wilson Road, Room 2201

Department Chairperson

Dr. Lawrence "Karl" Olson
Dr. Lawrence "Karl" Olson
 Biomedical & Physical Sciences Building
567 Wilson Road, Room 2201E
Phone: 517-884-5050