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Xinzhu Yu, Ph.D.
XY portrait-small.jpg

I was born in Beijing, China and came to the States in 2007 for my Ph.D study with Dr. Yi Zuo at University of California Santa Cruz. I always wanted to understand how the brain works and I started my career with a neurocentric view but by the end of my Ph.D. program, I became fascinated by another non-neuronal cell type, astrocytes. In 2014, I joined Dr. Baljit Khakh's lab at University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) as a postdoc, where I investigated astrocyte functions under health and disease at great depth. During this period, my interests in astrocytes were further shaped and refined. After completing my postdoctoral training, I established my own lab at UIUC in 2020 to continue exploring astrocytes in neural circuits and behavior. 



University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign


University of California Los Angeles


University of California Santa Cruz


University of California Santa Cruz


Tsinghua University, Beijing, China


Tsinghua University, Beijing, China

Assistant Professor

Postdoctoral Fellow

Postdoctoral Fellow

Ph.D. in Neurobiology

M.S. in Neuroscience

B.S. in Biology

Recent Awards




BRAIN Initiative Principal Investigators Meeting Travel Award, National Institutes of Health

Brain Research Institute Postdoctoral Award, University of California Los Angeles

American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellowship, American Heart Association

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