NYMC > Faculty > Faculty Profiles > By Name > Chung, Sangmi

Sangmi Chung, Ph.D.

Sangmi Chung, Ph.D.Professor of Cell Biology & Anatomy, Neurology, and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences


Department of Cell Biology & Anatomy
Basic Sciences Building, Room 221
Valhalla, NY 10595

Professional Interests:

The Translational Stem Cell Neurobiology Laboratory studies brain disorders in which inhibitory interneuron function is compromised, such as schizophrenia, epilepsy and autism, with the aim of developing novel therapeutics for these debilitating disorders.

Inhibitory interneurons are abnormal in schizophrenic brains. To find a better way to treat schizophrenia, we need to understand what goes wrong in diseased neurons. Now we can make schizophrenia inhibitory interneurons from stem cells that are made from patient skin cells. We are studying these patient neurons to find out what is causing their abnormalities. This study could lead to novel and more effective therapies for schizophrenia.

One in 25 people experience a seizure at some point in their life and 30% of them have seizures that cannot be treated with anti-seizure medication, presenting desperate need for the development of novel and more effective treatments. We have shown that transplantation of stem cell-derived human interneurons effectively reduce seizures and other brain abnormalities in animal models of epilepsy. We are further developing this novel therapeutics for the purpose of clinical translation.

Education Profile:

  • Post Graduate Studies: McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School
  • Graduate Degree: Ph.D. in Neuroscience
  • Graduate Degree Institution: Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences
  • Undergraduate Institution: Seoul National University

Selected Publications:

Qian Zhu, Akanksha Mishra, Joy S. Park, Dongxin Liu, Derek T. Le, Sasha Z. Gonzalez, Morgan Anderson-Crannage, James M. Park, Gun-Hoo Park, Laura Tarbay, Kamron Daneshvar, Matthew Brandenburg, Christina Signoretti1, Amy Zinski, Edward-James Gardner, Kelvin L. Zheng, Chiderah P. Abani, Carla Hu, Cameron P. Beaudreault, Xiao-Lei Zhang, Patric K. Stanton, Jun-Hyeong Cho, Libor Velišek, Jana Veliškova, Saqlain Javed, Christopher S. Leonard and Sangmi Chung*. Human cortical interneurons optimized for grafting specifically integrate, abort seizures and display prolonged efficacy without over-inhibition. Neuron 2023 Mar 15;111(6):807-823.e7. DOI: https://doi.org/10/1016/j.neuron.2022.12.014 

Impact of schizophrenia GWAS loci converge onto distinct pathways in cortical interneurons vs glutamatergic neurons during development. Liu D, Zinski A, Mishra A, Noh H, Park GH, Qin Y, Olorife O, Park JM, Abani CP, Park JS, Fung J, Sawaqed F, Coyle JT, Stahl E, Bendl J, Fullard JF, Roussos P, Zhang X, Stanton PK, Yin C, Huang W, Kim HY, Won H, Cho JH, Chung S*. Mol Psychiatry. 2022 Oct;27(10):4218-4233. DOI: 10.1038/s41380-022-01654-z.

Park, G., Noh, H., Shao, Z. et al. Activated microglia cause metabolic disruptions in developmental cortical interneurons that persist in interneurons from individuals with schizophrenia. Nature Neuroscience. 2020; 23(11):1352 -1364https://doi.org/10.1038/s41593-020-00724-1

Shao Z, Noh H, Bin Kim W, Ni P, Nguyen C, Cote SE, Noyes E, Zhao J, Parsons T, Park JM, Zheng K, Park JJ, Coyle JT, Weinberger DR, Straub RE, Berman KF, Apud J, Ongur D, Cohen BM, McPhie DL, Rapoport JL, Perlis RH, Lanz TA, Xi HS, Yin C, Huang W, Hirayama T, Fukuda E, Yagi T, Ghosh S, Eggan KC, Kim HY, Eisenberg LM, Moghadam AA, Stanton PK, Cho JH, Chung S*. Dysregulated protocadherin-pathway activity as an intrinsic defect in induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cortical interneurons from subjects with schizophrenia. Nature neuroscience. 2019; 22(2):229-242. PMCID: PMC6373728

Ni P, Noh H, Park GH, Shao Z, Guan Y, Park JM, Yu S, Park JS, Coyle JT, Weinberger DR, Straub RE, Cohen BM, McPhie DL, Yin C, Huang W, Kim HY, Chung S*. iPSC-derived homogeneous populations of developing schizophrenia cortical interneurons have compromised mitochondrial function. Molecular psychiatry. 2020 Nov;25(11):2873-2888. doi: 10.1038/s41380-019-0423-3. 

Ni P, Noh H, Shao Z, Zhu Q, Guan Y, Park JJ, Arif F, Park JM, Abani C, Beaudreault C, Park JS, Berry E, Moghadam A, Stanton P, Hutchinson JN, Andrews B, Faux C, Parnevelas J, Eisenberg LM, Park K, Bolshakov VY and Chung S*. Large-Scale Generation and Characterization of Homogeneous Populations of Migratory Cortical Interneurons from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells. Molecular Therapy - Methods & Clinical Development 2019; 13: 414-430.

Cunningham,M, Cho J-H, Leung A, Savvidis G. Ahn S, Moon M, Lee K-J, Han J, Azimi N, Kim K-S, Bolshakov V, Chung S*.  Human PSC-derived maturing GABAergic interneurons ameliorate seizures and abnormal behavior in epileptic mice. Cell Stem Cell. 2014;15:559-573.

Kim T-G,  Yao R, Cho J-H, Vasudevan A, Koh A, Moon M, Datta D, Bolshakov V, Kim K-S, Chung S*. Efficient specification of interneurons from human Pluripotent stem cells by dorsoventral and rostrocaudal modulation. Stem Cells. 2014;32(7):1789-180.

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