Robert Hunt

picture of Robert  Hunt

Associate Professor, Anatomy & Neurobiology
School of Medicine

Director, Epilepsy Research Center

Ph.D., University of Kentucky, 2010, Physiology
Postdoctoral Fellow, UCSF, 2015

Phone: 949-824-7079

University of California, Irvine

Irvine, CA 92697
Research Interests
neural circuits, synapses, stem cells, epilepsy, intellectual disability, traumatic brain injury
2010-2015 Postdoctoral Fellow, UCSF
Research Abstract
I have been an active member of the Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology at UC Irvine since joining the faculty in 2015. My lab focuses on conditions of brain development and injury where a treatment does not yet exist. We are creating new models of complex neurological disorders, developing cellular and molecular tools that enable precise manipulation or repair of the brain and recording high-speed dynamics of specialized neurons derived from human stem cells. Our philosophy is to embrace a broad view of neuroscience as we integrate a constellation of molecular, cellular, developmental, electrophysiological and systems-level methods in our work. Ultimately, we hope to discover precisely how the nervous system is changed in neurodevelopmental disorders or by traumatic brain injury, and to use this information to create new therapies. Our research has been funded by NIH, NSF, CIRM, DoD and private sources, including a K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Here at UCI, the lab also participates actively in the Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program, Epilepsy Research Center, Center for Autism Research and Translation, Stem Cell Research Center and the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory.
Traumatic brain injury to primary visual cortex produces long-lasting circuit dysfunction
Frankowski JC, Foik AT, Tierno A, Machhor JR, Lyon DC, Hunt RF
Communications Biology (2021)
Interneuron dysfunction in a new knock-in mouse model of SCN1A GEFS+
Das A, Zhu B, Xie Y, Zeng L, Pham AT, Neumann JC, Safrina O, Benavides DR, MacGregor GR, Schutte S, Hunt RF, O’Dowd DK
eNeuro (2021)
Transplanted interneurons improve memory precision after traumatic brain injury
Zhu B, Eom J, Hunt RF
Nature Communications (2019)
Epilepsy Therapy Goes Viral
Lim BC, Hunt RF
Epilepsy Currents (2019)
Chd2 is necessary for neural circuit development and long-term memory
Kim YJ, Khoshkhoo S, Frankowski JC, Zhu B, Abbasi S, Lee S, Wu YE, Hunt RF
Neuron (2018)
Selective vulnerability of hippocampal interneurons to graded traumatic brain injury
Frankowski JC, Kim YJ, Hunt RF
Neurobiology of Disease (2018)
Irritable no more: Activating mossy cells for the treatment of epilepsy
Kim YJ, Hunt RF
Epilepsy Currents (2018)
Modeling traumatic brain injury using controlled cortical impact injury
Frankowski JC, Hunt RF
KOPF Carrier #93 (2018)
PAFAH1B1 haploinsufficiency disrupts GABA neurons and synaptic E/I balance in the dentate gyrus
Dinday MT, Girskis KM, Lee S, Baraban SC, Hunt RF
Scientific Reports (2017)
Interneuron transplantation as a treatment for epilepsy
Hunt RF, Baraban SC
Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Medicine (2015)
NPAS1 represses the generation of specific subtypes of cortical interneurons
Stanco A, Pla R, Vogt D, Chen Y, Mandal S, Walker J, Hunt RF, Lindtner S, Erdman CA, Pieper AA, Hamilton SP, Xu D, Baraban SC, Rubenstein JLR.
Neuron (2014)
14-3-3e and z regulate neurogenesis and differentiation of neuronal progenitor cells in the developing brain
Toyooka K, Wachi T, Hunt RF, Baraban SC, Kaibuchi K, Schwarz QP, Lopez AF, Wynshaw-Boris A.
Journal of Neuroscience (2014)
Lhx6 directly regulates Arx and CXCR7 to determine cortical interneuron fate and laminar position
Vogt D, Hunt RF, Mandal S, Sandberg M, Silberberg SN, Nagasawa T, Yang Z, Baraban SC, Rubenstein JLR
Neuron (2014)
Neural circuit mechanisms of posttraumatic epilepsy
Hunt RF, Boychuk JA, Smith BN
Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience (2013)
GABA progenitors grafted into the adult epileptic brain control seizures and abnormal behavior
Hunt RF, Girskis KM, Rubenstein JL, Alvarez-Buylla A, Baraban SC
Nature Neuroscience (2013)
The devil is in the details: Stem cells for the treatment of epilepsy
Hunt RF, Baraban SC
Epilepsy Currents (2012)
LIS1 deficiency promotes dysfunctional synaptic integration of granule cells generated in the developing and adult dentate gyrus
Hunt RF, Dinday MT, Hindle-Katel W, Baraban SC
Journal of Neuroscience (2012)
A novel zebrafish model of hyperthermia-induced seizures reveals a role for TRPV4 channels and NMDA-type glutamate receptors
Hunt RF, Hortopan GA, Gillespie A, Baraban SC
Experimental Neurology (2012)
Posttrauamtic mossy fiber sprouting is related to cortical damage in three mouse strains
Hunt RF, Haselhorst LA, Bach EC, Rios-Pelier J, Schoch KM, Scheff SW, Saatman KE, and Smith BN
Epilepsy Research (2012)
Synaptic reorganization of inhibitory hilar interneuron circuitry after traumatic brain injury in mice
Hunt RF, Scheff SW, Smith BN
Journal of Neuroscience (2011)
Regionally localized recurrent excitation in the dentate gyrus of a cortical contusion model of posttraumatic epilepsy
Hunt RF, Scheff SW, Smith BN
Journal of Neurophysiology (2010)
Posttraumatic epilepsy after controlled cortical impact injury in mice
Hunt RF, Scheff SW, Smith BN
Experimental Neurology (2009)
Graduate Programs
Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program

Research Centers
Epilepsy Research Center
Center for Autism Research and Translation (CART)
Sue & Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center
Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory
Last updated