What We Do

We study the neurobiology of energy balance. Using cutting-edge approaches, we are working to understand the molecular, cellular, and circuit mechanisms through which the brain regulates food intake and energy expenditure. We are also developing novel technologies to better understand how the brain effects changes in behavior and physiology.


We are working to characterize the molecular composition of brainstem cell types regulating body weight, using ensemble and single-cell profiling methodologies.


Using functional approaches, such as in vivo calcium imaging and optogenetics, we are probing the function of discrete cell types throughout the brain.


Through the development and application of new viral approaches, we are working to identify polysynaptic circuits regulating feeding and thermogenesis.

Behavior & Physiology

Our lab is most interested in characterizing the brainstem cell types regulating behavioral and physiologic processes responsible for maintaining energy balance.

What We Are Publishing

Latest News

Three new technicians join the Nectow lab

The Nectow lab is thrilled to welcome three new very talented technicians to the group: Sheri Cheng from Cornell, as

Christa Akerele is awarded Columbia’s SPURS fellowship

Christa was recently awarded a summer fellowship from Columbia's Summer Program for Underrepresented Students (SPURS) to continue her work on

Marc Schneeberger becomes assistant professor at Yale University

Marc is the newest faculty member of Yale's Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology. Congrats, Marc! We can't wait to

Patrick Citrano joins the lab as a Master’s student

Patrick is a Master’s student in the Human Nutrition program here at Columbia. He joins us from the USC, where

Brianna Mariotti joins the lab as a Master’s student

Brianna is a Master's student in the Human Nutrition program at Columbia. She hails from the University of Michigan, where

Srikanth Chowdhury is awarded a Berrie Postdoctoral Fellowship in Diabetes Research

Srikanth was recently awarded the prestigious Russell Berrie Foundation's Berrie Fellowship in Diabetes Research. Congrats, Srikanth!

Our review on the role of the DRN in energy balance is out in TINS

In this review, published this week in Trends in Neurosciences, we discuss the key role of the dorsal raphe nucleus

Our lab is awarded a Berrie Program grant in the Neurobiology of Body Weight Regulation

This grant will enable our lab to better understand the mechanisms through which the DRN senses and responds to internal

Our lab is awarded a grant from the New York Nutrition and Obesity Research Center

This grant will allow our lab to push forward our molecular and physiology studies to investigate druggable targets with the

Tasneem Sadok joins the Nectow Lab

Tasneem joins our lab after recently graduating from UCLA, Class of 2021, working in the lab of Lindsay De Biase.

Our viral technologies review is published in Nature Reviews Neuroscience

This review, in collaboration with Eric Nestler, outlines the key principles and properties of viruses that enable their use as

Nectow Lab receives Addgene’s Blue Flame Award

Addgene's Blue Flame Award recognizes investigators with a plasmid that has been distributed more than 100 times. The lab was

Srikanta (Srikanth) Chowdhury joins the Nectow Lab

Srikanth joins us from the University of Chittagong in Bangladesh, after recently completing his PhD in Neuroscience with Akihiro Yamanaka

Michael Hill-Oliva joins the Nectow Lab

Michael joins our lab after recently graduating from Princeton University, Class of 2020, completing a senior thesis with Danelle Devenport.

Nachi Kamatkar is awarded a postdoctoral fellowship

Nachi has recently earned a position on an NIH T32 training grant (Training in Arteriosclerosis Research). Congrats, Nachi!

Nachiket (Nachi) Kamatkar joins the Nectow Lab

Nachi joins the Nectow Lab after recently completing his PhD with Jean Hebert and Matthew Levy at Albert Einstein.

Our paper on dorsal raphe circuits is published in Cell

Our collaborative team, led by co-authors Marc Schneeberger, Luca Parolari, and Tania Das Banerjee demonstrates a key role for the

The Nectow Lab moves to Columbia University

The Nectow Lab moves to Columbia University’s Department of Medicine, from Princeton University’s Princeton Neuroscience Institute.




Viral TRAP

Molecular logic gates