Einstein Experts

Kamran Khodakhah, Ph.D.

Kamran Khodakhah, Ph.D.

Professor and Chair, Dominick P. Purpura Department of Neuroscience

Florence and Irving Rubinstein Chair in Neuroscience

Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Professor, Saul R. Korey Department of Neurology

Vice Chair for Research, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

NeuroscienceCerebellum & basal ganglia interactionsBrain physiologyRole of cerebullum in addiction & mental disorders

Dr. Khodakhah’s NIH-funded research focuses on the role of the cerebellum in motor coordination, cognitive and social function, and addiction. He is an expert in optogenetics, a technology that uses light to turn on or off select cells. He directed the Society for Neuroscience’s training series on optogenetics and uses it in his own lab to explore brain pathways, particularly the cerebellum’s interaction with other brain structures. His January 2019 study in Science revealed, for the first time, the mechanistic pathway from the cerebellum to the brain region involved in reward, demonstrating that the cerebellum plays a major role in controlling addictive and social behavior. 

Dr. Khodakhah has also extensively studied neural pathways that cause dystonia, ataxia, and Parkinson’s disease. He is a leader of Einstein’s Brain Science Initiative, which oversees basic science and clinical research investigations on fundamental neuroscience and a range of diseases, including autism, neurodegenerative disorders, and addiction.

Dr. Khodakhah has been on the roster of, or chaired, six different NIH study sections. He also has served on advisory boards of numerous organizations, including the Simons Foundation, the Bachmann-Strauss Dystonia Foundation, the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation and the Institute for Neuroscience at the University of Autonoma de Barcelona. 


Additional Areas of Expertise

Calcium imaging, Electrophysiology , Motor coordination/movement disorders, Optogenetics


Highlighted Media Coverage

The Scientist

Scientific American

The Economist

Psychology Today



Einstein Multimedia

Newly Discovered Brain Region Function | Cerebellum Influences Addictive and Social Behavior


Professional Links

Society for Neuroscience: Optogenetics Training Series

News Releases

Latest News Releases


Email: k.khodakhah@einsteinmed.edu

Collexis Research Profile