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Home » Research at NEI » Neurobiology-Neurodegeneration and Repair Laboratory

Neurobiology Neurodegeneration & Repair Laboratory (N-NRL)

Anand Swaroop, Ph.D.
Anand Swaroop, Ph.D.

Lab Chief: Anand Swaroop, Ph.D.

Building 6, Room 338
6 Center Drive
Bethesda, Maryland 20892-0610
Phone: (301) 435-5754
Phone: (301) 435-6149
Fax: (301) 480-9917

Mission Statement

Neurobiology Neurodegeneration & Repair Laboratory (N-NRL) was established recently with a goal to develop novel treatment modalities for blinding retinal diseases based on fundamental understanding of genetic defects and/or biological pathways underlying differentiation, homeostasis, aging and disease pathogenesis.

Research Overview

The process of vision begins in the retina. In humans, retina supplies almost 30% of the sensory input to the brain. Any damage to retinal neurons can lead to devastating consequences, including the loss of vision. Retinal and macular diseases are a major cause of visual impairment and affect the quality of life for millions worldwide. The basic premise guiding the research of this laboratory is that clinical manifestations of disease result from perturbations in normal cellular behavior and adaptive changes to genetic variants/mutations interacting with environmental factors. With a focus on the retina, this laboratory wishes to significantly advance our understanding of several fundamentally important and interrelated biological processes and help pursue clinical interventions that utilize these advances. In particular, we seek to understand: (1) how neurons differentiate from neuroepithelial progenitors (or stem cells); (2) how these neurons form functional synaptic circuits; (3) how neuronal function is accomplished in the normal retina and how it is compromised during aging and in disease conditions; and (4) how can we repair the damage or treat the degenerative disease.

We have specifically identified the following focus areas of research:

The basic and clinical research environment at NIH provides unique opportunities to carry out innovative multi-disciplinary research that is critical for solving complex problems in biology and medicine. Our approach will be to build on strong and creative individual-specific projects yet tackle complex questions in retinal neurobiology and degeneration, which should lead to new cell, gene or small molecule based therapeutic paradigms. As retina is a relatively less complex and perhaps the most approachable part of the central nervous system, our research will complement the existing neuroscience programs at NIH.

Staff photo
Neurobiology Neurodegeneration & Repair Laboratory (N-NRL), Staff
[Enlarge Photo]

Open Positions

Tenure-track positions: A round of recruitments was recently completed. No more applications are currently being considered.

Post-docs: Current openings for junior Post-docs are in all research areas of interest to N-NRL. Outstanding candidates with published experience and solid training are encouraged to apply.

Internships: In general, we are ONLY considering IRTA fellows with long-term commitments (at least 6 months). The section on Retinal Development and Genetics (Dr. Swaroop) is NOT accepting summer interns for 2013, except in the area of computational biology. All inquiries should be addressed to Dr. Tiziana Cogliati at If you are interested in other potential internships within NEI, please contact Cesar Perez-Gonzalez, Ph.D., at


NNRL Structure

Title Name
Office of the Chief Anand Swaroop, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Search
Retinal Development and Genetics Section Anand Swaroop, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Search
Retinal Cell Biology and Degeneration Section Tiansen Li, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Search
Gene Therapy Unit Peter Colosi, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Search
Retinal Circuit Development & Genetics Unit Tudor Badea, M.D, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Search

Office of the Chief

Name Title E-mail
Anand Swaroop, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Search
Chief, Senior Investigator
Lucia Lawrence Administrative Lab Manager
Sharyn Ferrara Administrative Lab Manager at UM (Contractor)
Lori Bell Contractor – Purchasing
Matthew Brooks Biologist – Genomic technologies
Tiziana Cogliati, Ph.D. Contractor – Scientific administration
Linn Gieser Biologist – Molecular biology
Jacob Nellissery, Ph.D. Biologist – Proteomics and metabolism
Harsha K. Rajasimha, Ph.D. Bioinformatics Contractor – Bioinformatics
Yi-Sheng Chang Guest Researcher
Milton English Biologist – Zebra fish

Journal Covers

Selected Publications






Department of Health and Human Services NIH, the National Institutes of Health