Ming Gu

Ph.D. 2007

Thesis Title:

Study of Endomorphin-2-Immunoreactive Fibers and Serotonergic Neurons in the Rostral Ventral Medial Medulla

Current Position:

Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Dentistry, Neural and Pain Sciences, University of Maryland

Undergraduate Institution and Major/Degree:

Peking University, Basic Medical Sciences/ Bachelor of Medicine

Major Advisor(s):

Graduate Research Description:

Endomorphin-2 (EM-2) is an endogenous ligand for 5-opioid receptor. It has been reported that EM-2 is present in many brain regions including the periaqueductal gray (PAG), the rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM) and spinal cord dorsal horn, all of which play important roles in the descending pathway mediated both stimulation-produced analgesia and opioid-produced analgesia.

My research interest is focused on the relationship of EM-2-immunoreactive axons to the neurons in PAG-RVM-spinal cord circuitry. Fluorescent retrograde tract-tracing combining immunocytochemical staining and light microscopy are used to examine with what populations of neurons EM-2 fibers interact with in the PAG and RVM and whether the EM-2 fibers are from the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) / hypothalamus. I am also interested in the analgesic role the endogenous EM-2 plays. The antibody microprobes with behavior analysis will be used to examine whether the endogenous EM-2 has a function mediated with the stimulation-produced analgesia.

Graduate Lab Rotations:

  • Water Low
  • Alice Larson
  • Martin Wessendorf
  • Alvin Beitz

Graduate Courses Taken Beyond the Core Courses:

  • Biostatistical Methods I
  • Theory of Statistics I
  • Analysis of Categorical Data
  • Theory of Statistics II
  • Neurosci Drug Abuse
  • Neurobiol pain

Conferences Attended and Presentations:

  • Society for Neuroscience annual meeting - Fall 2001, 2003, 2004 (presented poster in 2003, 2004)
  • Pain annual meeting-Summer 2004 (presented poster)

Graduate Committee Members:

  • David Brown - Chair
  • Alvin Beitz
  • Christopher Honda
  • Donald Simone
  • Martin Wessendorf

Selected Publications:

  • Leong ML, Gu M, Speltz-Paiz R, Stahura EI, Mottey N, Steer CJ, Wessendorf M. Neuronal loss in the rostral ventromedial medulla in a rat model of neuropathic pain. J Neurosci. 2011;31(47):17028-39.
  • Gu M, Wessendorf M. Endomorphin-2-immunoreactive fibers selectively appose serotonergic neuronal somata in the rostral ventral medial medulla. J Comp Neurol. 2007;502(5):701-13.
  • Gu M, Wessendorf MV. Endomorphin-2-immunoreactive fibers selelctively appose serotonergic neuronal somata in the RVM. Society for Neuroscience National Meeting, 2004
  • Gu M, Wessendorf MV. Endomorphin-2-immunoreactive fibers are apposed both to RVM-projecting neurons and non-projecting neurons in the pig. Society for Neuroscience National Meeting, 2003
  • Gu M, Wang XM, Development in the research of molecular mechanism of Alzheimer's disease. . Chin Sci Bull. 1999;44:14.

Awards and Honors:

  • University of Minnesota Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, 2001-2002

Home Town:

  • Beijing, P.R.China
Ming Gu