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Joel Hahn

Assistant Professor (Research) of Biological Sciences

Contact Information
Phone: (213) 821-1837
Office: HNB 416B

Publication List (Google Scholar)

Description of Research

Summary Statement of Research Interests

Systems neuroscience is my broad field of interest, and within that my research primarily addresses cellular and neuroanatomical aspects of brain structures that enable the control of motivated behaviors. Secondarily, from this structural foundation, my interests extend to include correlative functional approaches, including behavioral models (notably those that have ethological relevance), to investigate the necessity and sufficiency of the underlying neural pathways and circuits in relation to specific innate or learned behaviors, and their associated homeostatic processes, at multiple levels of resolution. The hypothalamus is a central theme in my research, and a major focus is the lateral hypothalamic area (LHA), whose connections appear to play a central integrative and coordinating role between medial and periventricular hypothalamic innate behavior motor control networks, and cognitive control networks for voluntary behavior at the level of the cerebral cortex and cerebral nuclei. This general thesis builds on the discovery and description of distinct and topographically organized LHA circuits that have emerged in recent years, and it is also gaining experimental support from correlative functional interrogations. A related research area of interest is the application of computational informatics approaches applied to the increasing availability of massive amounts of brain connection and molecular architecture data. Collating and then mining these data sources using computational informatics approaches is providing new insights into fundamental aspects of brain organization that are fostering the next generation of system models, which in turn will provide a basis for novel hypotheses-driven experimental investigations of brain structure function/relations.

Research Keywords

Systems Neuroscience; Neural Networks; Cognitive and Motor Systems; Neuroendocrine System; Motivation and Emotion; Hypothalamus.

Research Specialties

Systems and Cellular Neuroscience; Neuroanatomy; Neural Connectomics; Neuroethology.

Affiliations with Research Centers, Labs, and Other Institutions

Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of Sao Paulo (group of Dr. Newton Canteras).
UNAM Institute of Neurobiology (Queretaro, Mexico) (group of Dr. Jorge Larriva-Sahd).
USC, Human & Evolutionary Biology (group of Dr. Scott Kanoski).


Journal Article

Hahn, J. D., Swanson, L. W. (2015). Connections of the juxtaventromedial region of the lateral hypothalamic area in the male rat. Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience. Vol. 9 (66), pp. 53. Open Access (Frontiers)
Hsu, T. M., Hahn, J. D., Konanur, V. R., Lam, A., Kanoski, S. E. (2014). Hippocampal GLP-1 receptors influence food intake, meal size, and effort-based responding for food through volume transmission. Neuropsychopharmacology. PubMed Web Address
Hahn, J. D., Swanson, L. W. (2012). Connections of the Lateral Hypothalamic Area Juxtadorsomedial Region in the Male Rat. Journal of Comparative Neurology. Vol. 520 (9), pp. 1831-1890. PubMed Web Address
Biag, J., Huang, Y., Gou, L., Hintiryan, H., Askarinam, A., Hahn, J. D., Toga, A. W., Dong, H. (2011). Cyto- and chemoarchitecture of the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus in the C57BL/6J male mouse: a study of immunostaining and multiple fluorescent tract tracing. Journal of Comparative Neurology. Vol. 520 (1), pp. 6-33. Faculty of 1000
Hahn, J. D., Swanson, L. W. (2010). Distinct patterns of neuronal inputs and outputs of the juxtaparaventricular and suprafornical regions of the lateral hypothalamic area in the male rat. Brain Research Reviews. Vol. 64 (1), pp. 14-103. PubMed Web Address
Hahn, J. D. (2010). Comparison of melanin-concentrating hormone and hypocretin/orexin peptide expression patterns in a current parceling scheme of the lateral hypothalamic zone. Neuroscience Letters. Vol. 468 (1), pp. 12-17. PubMed Web Address
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