Lab Members

Takaki Komiyama (PI)

Professor of Neurobiology and Neurosciences

Takaki grew up in Tokyo playing baseball. After graduating from the University of Tokyo, he joined a PhD program at Stanford, where he studied development of the fruit fly olfactory system in Liqun Luo’s lab. He then moved on to Janelia Farm as a postdoc in Karel Svoboda’s lab in December 2006 where he learned two-photon imaging and applied it in awake mice during learning. Takaki started at UCSD in September 2010.

Nathan Hedrick (Postdoc)

A raconteur, wordsmith, and general linguaphile, Nathan hails from the foothills of North Carolina. He studied biology,chemistry, and some languages at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He went on to earn his PhD at Duke University in the lab of Ryohei Yasuda, where he studied biochemical computation in dendrites during synaptic plasticity. His interests include bridging the gap between molecular and systems-level neuroscience, reading every Wikipedia page ever written, and venturing into outer space. When not in lab, Nathan enjoys running, playing guitar, and conceptualizing type III civilizations.

Ryoma Hattori (Postdoc)

Ryoma grew up in Osaka, Japan. After graduating from the University of Tokyo with B.S., he joined a Ph.D. program at Harvard University in Boston, where he studied multisensory interaction and plasticity in visual cortex. He escaped from cold weather and now enjoys sunny San Diego.

An Wu (Postdoc)

An is from Anhui, south China. She studied biology in Wuhan University and neuroscience in University of Miami before she traversed the country to San Diego. She is generally interested in neurophysiology and works mostly with the sensory system. Besides research, she likes literature, film and watching sports. When she has a hard time seeking the meaning of life, she travels.

Assaf Ramot (Postdoc)

Assaf was born and raised in Israel. He received his Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute of Science, under the supervision of Prof. Alon Chen where he studied novel stress-related brain circuits and the ability of toddlers to understand sarcasm, humor and the fact that their father is an independent identity. When he is not talking about imaging and/or microscopy he is probably at the microscope doing imaging or practicing new ways of making his kids fall a sleep by telepathy.

Enida Gjoni (Postdoc)

Born in Albania, during her childhood Enida moved to Italy, where she pursued her studies in Medical Biotechnology at the University of Milan. For her doctoral studies, she joined Ralf Schneggenburger’s laboratory at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, in Switzerland. Her PhD work focused on the functional and structural characterization of the input connectivity within a binaural circuit of the auditory brainstem, involved in sound localization.

Jake Wright (Postdoc)

Jake grew up in South Carolina. After receiving his B.S. in Biology from Wofford College, he went on to receive his PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Pittsburgh, where he studied the synaptic mechanisms underlying the reconsolidation of drug-associated memories in the lab of Yan Dong. In his free time, Jake enjoys cycling and working on his bikes, spending time out in nature, or reading a good book.


Sonja Blumenstock (Visiting Scholar)

Sonja studied Biochemistry and Neuroscience in her hometown Regensburg, Germany. She then earned her PhD at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, studying molecular and structural signatures of dendritic spine pathology in neurodegeneration. Advancing her postdoctoral work with the Max-Planck-Institute of Neurobiology, she now moved to UCSD as a visiting scholar to pursue her scientific ambition to uncover the driving components of network dysfunction in neurodegenerative movement disorders.

Sonja enjoys climbing, baking bread and playing her favorite instruments, the Ukulele and her voice. She almost always has a song stuck in her head, which she might be heard humming to herself.


Bethanny Danskin (Postdoc)

Bethanny grew up in the Seattle area, watching the rain and communing with squirrels. After earning her B.S. in Neurobiology at the University of Washington, she worked for two years at the Allen Institute for Brain Science on projects involving neural coding and behavior. She then left the Seattle grey for the San Diego sun, and joined the UCSD Neurosciences Graduate Program in 2015.

Bin Yu (Graduate Student)

Bin is from Tianjin, China, a city famous for cross-talk and stuffed bun. After five years of study in Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington, he joined the Ph.D. program at UCSD in 2017 and switched his primary research interest to neuroscience. He likes EDM a lot, so don’t be scared when he nods his head without any particular reason if he has a headphone over his ears.

Shuqi Chen (Graduate Student)

Shuqi grew up in Changsha, China, a city famous for spicy food, while Shuqi is not good at dealing with spicy food at all. After earning her B.S. in Biomedical Sciences at Zhejiang University, she continued to pursue her interests in the brain and neural circuits, and joined UCSD’s Biology Ph.D. Program in 2019. Shuqi is a big fan of KPOP and Japanese Seiyuu.

Eva Zhang (Graduate Student)

Eva grew up in Ningbo, a coastal city in Southeast China. She graduated from ShanghaiTech University with a BS degree in Biology and spent her 3rd year studying at Harvard as a visiting student. She then joined the UCSD Biological Sciences PhD program in 2019. She’s interested in psychology, behavioral economics and neuroscience related to decision-making. Outside of lab, she loves animations and illustrations for fun and for scientific communication. She’s also into learning Japanese and Korean, as well as cooking, singing and playing Final Fantasy.

Qiyu Chen (Graduate Student)

Qiyu grew up in Yichang and Wuhan, China, along the Yangtze River. She graduated from UCSD with a  B.S. in Biology. She was introduced to systems neuroscience when working in Komiyama Lab as an undergrad. She continued to work in the lab as a Research Assistant for two years before joining UCSD Biology PhD Program in 2020. Outside of the lab, she enjoys watching TV shows and vlogs, playing video games and sports.


Jeremy Chung-Yueh Lin (Graduate Student)

Jeremy was born and raised in Taipei, Taiwan. After earning his B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT, he joined the UCSD Neurosciences Graduate Program in 2020, pursuing his interests in discovering strategies for storing and transmitting information in the nervous system. Jeremy appreciates the diverse culture and landscape in San Diego, resembling his hometown, as he can explore different cuisines and hiking trails easily. In his free time, he enjoys playing badminton, reading fiction, and traveling. 

Bobbie Morales (Research Assistant)

Bobbie was born and raised in Brawley, California. She moved from the scorching hot desert to sunny San Diego where she earned her B.S in Biochemistry/Chemistry at UCSD. In her free time, she enjoys reading at the beach and going to coffee shops.

David Arakelyan (Research Assistant)

David was born in Armenia and immigrated to the United States when he was 12 years old. He earned an undergraduate degree in Neuroscience at UC San Diego in 2019. As an undergraduate student, he did 1 year of work as a research assistant in a neurobiology lab, studying cortical and cerebellum neuron degeneration. After graduating from UC San Diego, he worked as a medical scribe to explore the clinical aspect of medicine with a goal to eventually attend medical school. His passions outside of academia include basketball, hiking, walks on the beach, exploring the outdoors, going to coffee shops, and spending time with friends and family.

Elanore (Research Assistant)

Quiet as the mice she cares for, Elanore has a wide range of interests, including general science, psychology, mythology, computers, gaming, speculative fiction, and various arts and crafts.  Most of her free time is spent either playing video games, reading up on various odd subjects, or trying to get her multitudes of personal projects organized.  She lives with her sister, mother (also formerly of Komiyama lab), four cats and way too many rabbits.

Undergraduate and Masters Students 

Jenny Yue

Celeste Yang

Kevin Tan

Chelsea Shao

Kevin Zhang

Emma Chen

Hannah Kim

John Ratliff

May Wang

Cindy Wang

Sarah Yassein

Sophia Zhou




Itaru Imayoshi (Visiting Scholar, now Assistant Professor at Kyoto Univ.)

Jun Lee (Postdoc, now Analyst at UCSD Cancer Center)

Simon Chen (Postdoc, now Assistant Professor at Ottawa Univ.)

Andy Peters (Graduate Student, now Postdoc at UCL)

Hiroshi Makino (Postdoc, now Assistant Professor at Nanyang Univ.)

Madan Makundan (Masters Student, now Lab Manager at UCSF)

Monica Chu (Graduate Student, now Lecturer at UCSD)

Jeff Dahlen (Graduate Student, now Analyst at MKO Global Partners)

Anna Kim (Research Assistant, now Research Assistant at Columbia University)

Shan Lu (Undergraduate Student, now PhD candidate at Columbia University)

Wankun Li (Graduate student, now at Ernst & Young)

Tara Loveland (Research assistant, now Doctor of Physical Therapy Candidate at UC-Denver)

Sara Emami (Masters Student, now MD Candidate at UCLA)

Jungwon Seo (Associate Professor, Wonkwang Univ.)

Akinori Mitani (Graduate Student, now at Google Brain)

Trevor Link (Masters Student, now an EMT at PRN Ambulance)

Haixin Liu (Postdoc, now Postdoc at NYU)

Keelin O’Neil (Research Assistant, now PhD candidate at NYU)

Xinlei Lin (Daisy) (Masters Student, now PhD candidate at NYU)

Zhongmin Lu (Postdoc, now Postdoc at Salk Institute)

Zeljana Babic (Masters student, now PhD candidate at UCSD)

Oscar Arroyo (Research Assistant, now PhD candidate at UNC)

Sun Woo Hong (Masters Student, now Research Assistant at MapLight Therapeutics )

Yuxin Hu (Masters Student, now PhD candidate at Columbia University)

Yessenia Magaña (Research Assistant)

Chi Ren (Postdoc)

Sayyed Jilani (Research Assistant, now Master’s student at UC Berkeley)

Shudi Xu (Visiting Scholar)

Brian Fang (Research Assistant)