University of Illinois at Chicago
Department of Psychiatry
1601 W. Taylor Street, (Rm 529, M/C 912)
Chicago, IL 60612

Office Phone: (312) 413-4572
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Smalheiser, N.R., Lugli, G., Thimmapuram, J., Cook, E.H., & Larson, J., Endogenous siRNAs and noncoding RNA-derived small RNAs are expressed in adult mouse hippocampus and are up-regulated in olfactory discrimination training. RNA (in press).

Hu, Y.-S., Xu, P., Pigino, G., Brady, S.T., Larson, J., & Lazarov, O. Complex environment experience rescues impaired neurogenesis, enhances synaptic plasticity, and attenuates neuropathology in Familial Alzheimer’s Disease-linked APPswe/PS1E9 mice. FASEB Journal, 24 (2010) 1667-1681.

Smalheiser, N.R., Lugli, G., Lenon, A., Davis, J.M., Torvik, V.I., & Larson, J. Olfactory discrimination training up-regulates and reorganizes expression of microRNAs in adult mouse hippocampus. ASN Neuro, 2(1): e00028 (PMCID: PMC2832745).

Larson, J. & Park, T.J. Extreme hypoxia tolerance of naked mole-rat brain. NeuroReport, 20 (2009) 1634-1637 (PMID: 19907351).

Patel, R.C. & Larson, J. Impaired olfactory discrimination learning and decreased olfactory sensitivity in aged C57Bl/6 mice. Neurobiology of Aging, 30 (2009) 829-837 (PMID: 17904696).

Larson, J., Kim, D., Patel, R.C., & Floreani, C. Olfactory discrimination learning in mice lacking the fragile X mental retardation protein. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 90 (2008) 90-102 (PMCID: PMC2493566).

Lazarov, O. & Larson, J. Environmental enrichment: from mouse AD model to AD therapy.  In: M.-K Sun (Ed.), Research Progress in Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia (Vol. 3), New York: Nova (2008) pp. 303-328.

Larson, J. Jessen, R.E., Kim, D., Fine, A.-K.S., & J. du Hoffmann. Age-dependent and selective impairment of LTP in anterior piriform cortex of mice lacking the fragile X mental retardation protein. Journal of Neuroscience, 25 (2005) 9460-9469 (PMID: 16221856).

Larson, J. & Sieprawska, D. Automated study of simultaneous-cue olfactory discrimination learning in adult mice. Behavioral Neuroscience, 116 (2002) 588-599 (PMID: 12148926).

Larson, J., Lynch, G., Games, D., & Seubert, P. Alterations in synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation in hippocampal slices from young and aged PDAPP mice. Brain Research, 840 (1999) 23-35 (PMID: 10517949).

John Larson, PhD

Associate Professor of Physiology in Psychiatry

Dr. Larson studies the cellular and molecular mechanisms of memory formation. Of primary interest is long-term potentiation (LTP), a form of synaptic plasticity thought to be responsible for memory storage in the mammalian forebrain. Research in the laboratory investigates the role of LTP in olfactory learning and memory in rodents with emphasis on mouse models of autism, mental retardation, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. Dr. Larson’s laboratory also studies neuronal specialization in the brains of naked mole-rats, in particular tolerance of brain neurons to extreme oxygen deprivation.

Cellular and molecular mechanisms for learning and memory; Olfaction (smell); Autism; Fragile X syndrome; Alzheimer’s disease; Comparative neurobiology

Psychiatric Institute of the UIC Department of Psychiatry; UIC Department of Biological Sciences (Affiliate faculty member); UIC Department of Psychology (Affiliate faculty member); Society for Neuroscience; International Brain Research Organization; Association for Chemoreception Sciences

Cortical synaptic function and memory in mouse models for autism; Neurobiology of the naked mole-rat; Regulation of neuronal gene expression in learning; Synaptic plasticity and neuronal function in mouse models for Alzheimer’s disease; Olfactory learning and memory in mice. Aging and memory function in mice. Mechanisms for hypoxia tolerance in mammalian nervous system.


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