Overview of interests
Dr. Wang is a neurobiologist whose research focuses on delineating molecular mechanisms that regulate the proliferation and differentiation of neural stem cells, including both embryonic and adult neural stem cells, with the ultimate goal of defining ways to recruit the stem cells that are resident in the brain, and to thereby promote neural repair. Dr. Wang uses stroke as a brain disease model to study whether molecular pathways that regulate the recruitment of neural stem cells under pathological conditions could be modulated and utilized to promote brain repair and stroke recovery.
Scientific breakthroughs / impact
As a postdoctoral fellow, Dr. Wang was the first person to discover that a widely-used human diabetes drug, metformin, is able to promote neurogenesis and to improve spatial learning in adult mice. As a direct outcome of this seminal finding, a clinical trial on the effectiveness of metformin at improving functional recovery after acquired brain injury is under way.
Dr. Wang’s research is supported by the J.P. Bickell Foundation.