Ting Feng headshot

Ting Feng

Research Assistant Professor


Dr. Feng has a broad background in neuroscience and molecular biology, with specific focus on studying neural circuit underlying visual-guided hunting behavior. During her Ph.D. in China, Dr. Feng focused on investigating the role of cholecystokinin (CCK) in stress-induced fear memory. Cholecystokinin is a neuropeptide that plays a role in various physiological processes, including anxiety and memory. Her research likely involved studying how CCK affects fear memory formation and the underlying neural circuits. After completing her Ph.D., Dr. Feng moved to the United States and worked as a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Avadhani's lab at the University of Pennsylvania. Here, her research shifted towards understanding the molecular mechanisms of Parkinson's Disease. Parkinson's Disease is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the loss of dopamine-producing neurons in the brain. Her work involved investigating the genetic and molecular factors contributing to the development and progression of this disease.

Subsequently, Dr. Feng joined Dr. Pieraut's lab at the University of Nevada, Reno. In this lab, she received training in electrophysiology and imaging techniques to study inhibitory networks in the developmental hippocampus. Her research has involved studying how inhibitory circuits develop and function within the hippocampus, which is essential for proper cognitive function.

As of 2022, Dr. Feng has been working in Dr. Jennifer Hoy's lab at the University of Nevada, Reno. Here, her research focuses on studying the neural circuitry underlying visual-guided prey-capture behavior. This involves investigating how the brain processes visual information to guide hunting or prey-capturing behaviors. Throughout her academic and research journey, Dr. Feng has acquired a diverse set of skills, including expertise in molecular biology, histology, electrophysiology, and imaging methodology. Her research trajectory showcases a transition from molecular-level investigations of neuropeptides and disease mechanisms to studying neural circuits and behavior. This multidisciplinary background positions her well for tackling complex questions at the intersection of neuroscience, molecular biology, and behavior.

Research interests

  • Neural circuit underlying visual-guided behavior
  • Development of inhibitory neuron plasticity
  • Neural basis of neural developmental disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and addiction


  • Ph.D. in Pathology and Pathophysiology, Hebei Medical University, China, 2014
  • M.S. in Forensic Medicine, Hebei Medical University, China, 2010

Selected publications

  • Rukundo P, Feng T, Pham V, and Pieraut S, Moderate effect of early-life experience on dentate gyrus function. Molecular Brain, 2022,15(1):1-12
  • Allen K, Olvera R, Kumar M, Feng T, Pieraut S, and Hoy JL, A binocular perception deficit characterizes prey pursuit in developing mice. iScience, 2022,17;25(11):105368
  • Feng T, Alicea C, Pham V, Kirk A, Pieraut S, Experience-dependent inhibitory plasticity is mediated by CCK+ basket cells in the developing dentate gyrus. Journal of Neuroscience, 2021, 41(21):4607-4619