Wester_Jason_460x460Assistant Professor, Department of Neuroscience

Office: 4123 Graves Hall
Lab: 4024 Graves Hall
333 W. 10th Ave
Columbus, OH 43210

Office Phone: 614-293-8961
Lab Phone: 614-293-6644

Lab website

Research Focus

We study how neural circuits in the neocortex and hippocampus are organized and develop. Our primary focus is on patterns of synaptic connectivity between different types of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. To accomplish this, we compare circuits observed during normal development with those observed in mouse models of developmental disorders such as autism. We are testing the hypothesis that mature cortical circuits contain repeated motifs (selective connectivity among specific neuronal types), which are necessary for normal brain function, and are altered in disease conditions during early developmental periods.


We use transgenic mice to label specific neuronal subtypes and knockout key disease risk genes.  We also deliver genes via in vivo stereotaxic injection of viral vectors. We then use paired whole-cell recordings and optogenetics in acute slices of neocortex and hippocampus to map local circuits and study their synaptic physiology under normal and mutant conditions. Additionally, we use immunohistochemistry and single-cell RNA-sequencing to investigate cell- and non-cell-autonomous changes in molecular expression.

Education and Training

PhD: Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania
Postdoctoral Training: National Institutes of Health (Chris McBain lab, NICHD)

PubMed articles