Site Search



Baljit Khakh, Ph.D.

Email Address:
bkhakh@mednet.ucla.edu
Work Email Address:
bkhakh@mednet.ucla.edu

Office Address:
Departments of Physiology, and Neurobiology
UCLA

UNITED STATES

Work Phone Number:
310-825-6258



Login to the Faculty Database

Department / Division Affiliations
Professor, Neuroscience IDP, Neurobiology, Physiology
Member, ACCESS Program: Dept. of Molecular, Cell & Integrative Physiology, Access Cell and Developmental Biology Home Area, Access Molecular Pharmacology: Therapeutics, Diagnostics, and Biology of Disease Home Area, Access Molecular, Cellular and Integrative Physiology Home Area, Access Neuroscience Home Area, Brain Research Institute, Pharmacology Home Area
Faculty, Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Physiology IDP

Research Interest:

Ion channels, glia and synapses

Astrocyte biology and biophysics. Astrocytes are a type of brain glial cell discovered by early neuroanatomists over a century ago. Captivated by their elaborate shapes, these pioneers documented the close spatial relationships between astrocytes and neurons. Subsequent work showed that fine astrocyte processes form connections with as many as 100,000 synapses and that individual astrocytes are tiled, as though they “know” not to invade each others territories. These studies raise the exciting possibility that individual astrocytes may regulate subsets of neurons and contribute to the operation of neuronal circuits. The lab seeks to investigate this possibility. ATP signaling. One reason the body can function in a regulated manner is due to the ability of cells to communicate with other cells in a precise way over different scales of time and distance. A major advance has been the realization that ATP, which is the energy source for reactions within cells, also plays major roles as a communicator between cells by activating P2X ion channels which are cell surface ATP receptors. By understanding P2X channel physiology in neurons and glia we seek to decipher how ATP shapes excitability and signaling over broad spatial and temporal scales.

Bio:

Baljit S. Khakh received a Ph.D. degree from the University of Cambridge in 1995. During his graduate studies, he also spent some time at the Geneva Biomedical Research Institute. Dr. Khakh completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Dr. Graeme Henderson at the University of Bristol, followed by a fellowship at the California Institute of Technology, working in the laboratories of Drs. Henry A. Lester and Norman Davidson as a Wellcome Trust International Prize Traveling Research Fellow, and Senior Research Fellow in the Division of Biology. In 2001, Dr. Khakh returned to Cambridge in the Division of Neurobiology at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology. Dr. Khakh joined UCLA in April 2006.

Publications:

E. Shigetomi, X. Tong, K. Kwan, D.P. Corey, & B.S. Khakh TRPA1 channels regulate astrocyte resting calcium and inhibitory synapse efficacy via GAT-3. Nature Neuroscience. 2012; 15: 70-80.
Reeves AM, Shigetomi E, Khakh BS. Bulk loading of calcium indicator dyes to study astrocyte physiology: key limitations and improvements using morphological maps. J Neurosci. 2011; 22: 9353-8.
Richler E, Shigetomi E, Khakh BS. Neuronal P2X2 Receptors Are Mobile ATP Sensors That Explore the Plasma Membrane When Activated. J Neurosci. 2011; 31: 16716-30.
Shigetomi E, Kracun S, Sofroniew MV, Khakh BS. A genetically targeted optical sensor to monitor calcium signals in astrocyte processes. Nature Neuroscience. 2010; 13: 759-66.
E. Richler, S. Chaumont, E. Shigetomi, A. Sagasti & BS. Khakh. Tracking transmitter-gated P2X cation channel activation in vitro and in vivo. Nature Methods 2008; 5: 87-93.
D.N. Bowser & BS. Khakh Two forms of astrocyte single vesicle exocytosis imaged with total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2007; 104: 485-91.
Khakh, B. S. North, R. A. P2X receptors as cell surface ATP sensors in health and disease. Nature 2006; 442: 527-532.
Khakh, B. S. Molecular physiology of P2X receptors and ATP signalling at synapses. Nat Rev Neurosci. 2001; 2(3): 165-74.
Khakh, B.S. Zhou, X. Sydes, J. Galligan, J.J. Lester, H.A. State-dependent cross-inhibition between transmitter-gated cation channels. Nature 2000; 406: 405-410.
Khakh, B.S. Lester, H.A. Dynamic Selectivity Filters in Ion Channels. Neuron 1999; 23: 653-658.
Khakh, B.S. Bao, X. Labarca, C. Lester, H.A. Neuronal P2X receptor-transmitter-gated cation channels change their ion selectivity in seconds. Nat Neurosci 1999; 2(4): 322-330.
Tong Xiaoping, Shigetomi Eiji, Looger Loren L, Khakh Baljit S Genetically encoded calcium indicators and astrocyte calcium microdomains. The Neuroscientist : a review journal bringing neurobiology, neurology and psychiatry. 2013; 19(3): 274-91.
Shigetomi Eiji, Jackson-Weaver Olan, Huckstepp Robert T, O'Dell Thomas J, Khakh Baljit S TRPA1 channels are regulators of astrocyte basal calcium levels and long-term potentiation via constitutive D-serine release. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2013; 33(24): 10143-53.
Shigetomi Eiji, Bushong Eric A, Haustein Martin D, Tong Xiaoping, Jackson-Weaver Olan, Kracun Sebastian, Xu Ji, Sofroniew Michael V, Ellisman Mark H, Khakh Baljit S Imaging calcium microdomains within entire astrocyte territories and endfeet with GCaMPs expressed using adeno-associated viruses. The Journal of general physiology. 2013; 141(5): 633-47.
Hamby Mary E, Coppola Giovanni, Ao Yan, Geschwind Daniel H, Khakh Baljit S, Sofroniew Michael V Inflammatory mediators alter the astrocyte transcriptome and calcium signaling elicited by multiple G-protein-coupled receptors. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2012; 32(42): 14489-510.
Khakh Baljit S, North R Alan Neuromodulation by extracellular ATP and P2X receptors in the CNS. Neuron. 2012; 76(1): 51-69.
Toulme Estelle, Khakh Baljit S Imaging P2X4 receptor lateral mobility in microglia: regulation by calcium and p38 MAPK. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2012; 287(18): 14734-48.
Shigetomi Eiji, Tong Xiaoping, Kwan Kelvin Y, Corey David P, Khakh Baljit S TRPA1 channels regulate astrocyte resting calcium and inhibitory synapse efficacy through GAT-3. Nature neuroscience. 2012; 15(1): 70-80.
Richler Esther, Shigetomi Eiji, Khakh Baljit S Neuronal P2X2 receptors are mobile ATP sensors that explore the plasma membrane when activated. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2011; 31(46): 16716-30.
Reeves Alexander M B, Shigetomi Eiji, Khakh Baljit S Bulk loading of calcium indicator dyes to study astrocyte physiology: key limitations and improvements using morphological maps. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2011; 31(25): 9353-8.
Shigetomi Eiji, Kracun Sebastian, Khakh Baljit S Monitoring astrocyte calcium microdomains with improved membrane targeted GCaMP reporters. Neuron glia biology. 2010; 6(3): 183-91.
Shigetomi Eiji, Kracun Sebastian, Sofroniew Michael V, Khakh Baljit S A genetically targeted optical sensor to monitor calcium signals in astrocyte processes. Nature neuroscience. 2010; 13(6): 759-66.
Toulme Estelle, Garcia Angie, Samways Damien, Egan Terrance M, Carson Monica J, Khakh Baljit S P2X4 receptors in activated C8-B4 cells of cerebellar microglial origin. The Journal of general physiology. 2010; 135(4): 333-53.
Kracun Sebastian, Chaptal Vincent, Abramson Jeff, Khakh Baljit S Gated access to the pore of a P2X receptor: structural implications for closed-open transitions. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2010; 285(13): 10110-21.
Kracun Sebastian, Chaptal Vincent, Abramson Jeff, Khakh Baljit S Gated access to the pore of a P2X receptor: structural implications for closed-open transitions. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2010; 285(13): 10110-21.
Shigetomi Eiji, Khakh Baljit S Measuring near plasma membrane and global intracellular calcium dynamics in astrocytes. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE. 2009; 301(26): .
Singh Harpreet, Warburton Sarah, Vondriska Thomas M, Khakh Baljit S Proteomics to identify proteins interacting with P2X2 ligand-gated cation channels. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE. 2009; 301(27): .
Khakh Baljit S, Burnstock Geoffrey The double life of ATP. Scientific American. 2009; 301(6): 84-90, 92.
Khakh Baljit S ATP-gated P2X receptors on excitatory nerve terminals onto interneurons initiate a form of asynchronous glutamate release. Neuropharmacology. 2009; 56(1): 216-22.
Chaumont Severine, Compan Vincent, Toulme Estelle, Richler Esther, Housley Gary D, Rassendren Francois, Khakh Baljit S Regulation of P2X2 receptors by the neuronal calcium sensor VILIP1. Science signaling. 2008; 1(41): ra8.