Lan Zhu studied medicine in Tongji Medical University, Wuhan, China. After receiving her BM, she went on to teach Physiology at the same medical school for a couple of years. Later, she pursued her PhD in Neuroscience in Turin, Italy. After her PhD, she worked at University of Turin, University of Leicester, and King’s College London as a postdoctoral researcher.
She joined DMU in February 2015 as a Lecturer in Biomedical and Medical Science. Her main research interests are the neuronal mechanisms in physiological and pathological processes. She has been studying the brain cellular and molecular mechanisms for the learning and memory e.g. neuronal/synaptic plasticity for many years, and then ion channels particularly potassium channel mechanisms in peripheral neuropathic pain.
She also has a passion in the translational research which led her to co-lead and complete a project with a group of neuroscientists, neurologists, urologists and engineers.
She is currently interested in combining neurophysiology with neuropsychiatry and trying to understand the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders. Her current research is looking at the regulation of some neuronal functional key players such as potassium channels in the cerebellum and how the dysregulation contributes to the neuronal and cerebellar dysfunction in a pharmacological animal model of schizophrenia. This may help to identify more effective drug targets for this brain disorder and lead to the new drug development strategy. She is collaborating with neuroscientists from DMU and University of Leicester.
The research techniques employed in her research include behaviour analysis, surgery, whole cell patch clamp recording, in vivo extracellular recording, ex vivo sharp electrode intracellular recording, cell/tissue culture, immunohistochemistry, fluorescence microscopy, confocal microscopy, western blot and RT-qPCR.
She currently leads the thematic area of Translational Science within the Institute of Applied Health Research.