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Hermes Hsiao-Mei Yeh, PhD

Professor of Molecular and Systems Biology
Professor of Neurology
William W. Brown 1835M Memorial Professor

Additional Titles/Positions/Affiliations:
Chair of Physiology & Neurobiology Department

Molecular and Systems Biology

1972 - 1976 B.A. DePauw University, Greencastle, IN (Zoology & Physical Chemistry)

1976 - 1981 Ph.D. University of Texas Health, Southwestern Med. Ctr., Dallas, TX (Cell Biology/Neuroscience)

1981 - 1984 Postdoc. Staff Fellow, Laboratory of Vision Research, NEI, NIH, Bethesda, MD (Retinal Neurobiology)

Program in Experimental and Molecular Medicine

Contact Information:

HB 7700
Department of Physiology and Neurobiology,
One Medical Center Drive
Lebanon NH 03756

Office: 700 E Borwell Building
Phone: 603-650-7798
Fax: 603-650-7716
Email: hermes.yeh@dartmouth.edu

Asst. Phone: 603-650-7717

Professional Interests:

Dr. Yeh received the Ph.D. degree in Cell Biology with concentration in Neuroscience from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. His research interests are in the neurosciences. Specifically, his research revolves around issues related to the functions of neurotransmitter systems and neurotrophins in the normal and diseased brain. There are several research programs ongoing in his laboratory. One of the research programs investigates the role of GABA as a developmental neurotransmitter in regulating neuronal migration and synapse formation at embryonic stages of corticogenesis. This project has been extended to examining the enduring effects of maternal ethanol (alcohol) consumption on brain development in the offspring. Another research program seeks to delineate the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying altered synaptic plasticity within the septohippocampal system, including the actions of neurotransmitters and neurotrophins. All of the research projects combine experimental approaches that include electrophysiology, neuroanatomy, biochemistry and molecular biology. Overall, these projects have laid the groundwork for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to develop and elaborate on their own research interests and directions.
Dr. Yeh has taught actively in the medical school and graduate school curricula, and has leadership roles in directing graduate education and training at the institutional and national levels.

Rotations and Thesis Projects:

All rotation and thesis projects reflect the multidisciplinary approach taken in my laboratory. For rotations, the nature of the projects are necessarily of more limited scope because on concomitant coursework. Students can expect to conduct focused short-term hypothesis-driven projects that will allow them to become familiar with at least one of the following approaches:
Molecular biology: quantitative RT-PCR and/or candidate gene profiling in single cells.
Immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy; Western blot/ELISA.
Electrophysiology: patch clamp recording and/or extracellular field potential recording.
Specific examples of rotation projects that involve one or more of the above approaches:
1. Does binge drinking ethanol early in pregnancy have enduring effects on the development of the fetal cerebral cortex?
2. What is the expression profile of GABAA receptor subunits in GABAergic cortical interneuronal subpopulations?
3. Are Cajal-Retzius cells tonically excited by an ambient level of GABA during cortical development?
4. Do Cajal Retzius cells release transmitter, such as GABA or glutamate?
5. Does an acute exposure to ethanol affect excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in the medial septum?

Interested students are encouraged to meet with Dr. Yeh and discuss rotation projects tailored to their interests.

Grant Information:

RO1 NS048603, Yeh, Hermes H. (PI)
The Septohippocampal System: Regulation by Neurotrophins

R01 MH69826, Yeh, Hermes H. (PI) NIH/NIMH
Tangentially Migrating Neurons During Corticogenesis

Courses Taught:

Medical Human Gross Anatomy (U. Rochester Sch. Med.) 1984-1992
Neurobiology for undergraduate neuroscience majors (U. Rochester) 1989-1991
Experimental Neuroscience (U. Rochester Sch. Med.) 1988-1990
Medical Physiology (1st. yr Med. Sch., Bowman Gray Sch. Med.) 1993-1995
Medical Pharmacology (2nd. yr Med. Sch., Bowman Gray Sch. Med.) 1994-1995
Developmental Neuroscience (Bowman Gray Sch. Med.) 1992-1995
Advanced Physiology for graduate students (Bowman Gray) 1992-1995
Neuroscience Special Topics Tutorial (Bowman Gray Sch. Med.) 1992-1995
Integrative Graduate Neuroscience (Bowman Gray Sch. Med.) 1992-1995
Mechanisms of Disease, (2nd yr. Med. Sch., UCHC) 1995-1999
Section Leader: Diseases of the Nervous System 1997-1999
Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience (Grad. Sch., UCHC) 1996-2000
Systems Neuroscience (Grad. Sch., UCHC) 1996-2000
Pharmacology Core Course (Grad. Sch., UCHC) 1996-2000
Cellular Neuroscience (Grad. Sch., U. Rochester SMD), Coordinator, Section on Developmental Neuroscience 2000-2005
Ethics and Professional Integrity (U. Rochester SMD), Co-Director 2000-2005
PBL, Humans Structure and Function (1st. yr. SMD), U. Rochester 2001-2005
PBL, Mechanisms of Drug Action (2nd. Yr. SMD), U. Rochester 2000-2005
Program in Experimental and Molecular Medicine Core Course, DMS 2006-
Program in Experimental and Molecular Medicine PEMM 271, DMS 2008-
Program in Experimental and Molecular Medicine Neuroscience II 2012-

Selected Publications:


  • Chan CH, Yeh HH. Enhanced GABA(A) receptor-mediated activity following activation of NMDA receptors in Cajal-Retzius cells in the developing mouse neocortex. J Physiol. 2003 Jul 1;550(Pt 1):103-11. (view details on MedLine)

  • Wu CW, Yeh HH. Nerve growth factor rapidly increases muscarinic tone in mouse medial septum/diagonal band of Broca. J Neurosci. 2005 Apr 27;25(17):4232-42. (view details on MedLine)

  • Cuzon VC, Yeh PW, Cheng Q, Yeh HH. Ambient GABA promotes cortical entry of tangentially migrating cells derived from the medial ganglionic eminence. Cereb Cortex. 2006 Oct;16(10):1377-88. (view details on MedLine)

  • Cheng Q, Yeh PW, Yeh HH. Cajal-Retzius cells switch from expressing gamma-less to gamma-containing GABA receptors during corticogenesis. Eur J Neurosci. 2006 Oct;24(8):2145-51. (view details on MedLine)

  • Johnson EM, Craig ET, Yeh HH. TrkB is necessary for pruning at the climbing fibre-Purkinje cell synapse in the developing murine cerebellum. J Physiol. 2007 Jul 15;582(Pt 2):629-46. (view details on MedLine)

  • Cuzon VC, Yeh PW, Yanagawa Y, Obata K, Yeh HH. Ethanol consumption during early pregnancy alters the disposition of tangentially migrating GABAergic interneurons in the fetal cortex. J Neurosci. 2008 Feb 20;28(8):1854-64. (view details on MedLine)

  • Lee H, Raiker SJ, Venkatesh K, Geary R, Robak LA, Zhang Y, Yeh HH, Shrager P, Giger RJ. Synaptic function for the Nogo-66 receptor NgR1: regulation of dendritic spine morphology and activity-dependent synaptic strength. J Neurosci. 2008 Mar 12;28(11):2753-65. (view details on MedLine)

  • Ericson M, Sama MA, Yeh HH. Acute ethanol exposure elevates muscarinic tone in the septohippocampal system. J Neurophysiol. 2010 Jan;103(1):290-6. (view details on MedLine)

  • Cuzon Carlson VC, Yeh HH. GABAA receptor subunit profiles of tangentially migrating neurons derived from the medial ganglionic eminence. Cereb Cortex. 2011 Aug;21(8):1792-802. (view details on MedLine)

  • Guo L, Yeh ML, Cuzon Carlson VC, Johnson-Venkatesh EM, Yeh HH. Nerve growth factor in the hippocamposeptal system: evidence for activity-dependent anterograde delivery and modulation of synaptic activity. J Neurosci. 2012 May 30;32(22):7701-10. (view details on MedLine)