Chang LIU

Ph.D, Principle investigator

Office Phone: 86-755-86140451


Research Areas

Investigates neural mechanisms of sleep, learning and memory.


Work Experience

2019- now , Principle Investigator, SIAT CAS 

2012-2019, Postdoctoral Fellow, Brandeis University 

2004-2007, Research Assistant, Kunming Institute of Zoology, CAS

2003-2004, Biology teacher, Shijiazhuang No. 2 Middle School



  1. Timothy D. Wiggin, Patricia R. Goodwin, Nathan C. Donelson, Chang Liu, Kien Trinh, Subhabrata Sanyal, Leslie C. Griffith*. Covert sleep-related biological processes are revealed by probabilistic analysis in Drosophila. PNAS, 2020 (accepted)
  2. Chang Liu*, Zhiqiang Meng#, Timothy D. Wiggin#, Junwei Yu, Fang Guo, Martha Reed, Yunpeng Zhang, Michael Rosbash, Leslie C. Griffith*. A serotonin-modulated circuit controls sleep architecture to regulate cognitive function independent of total sleep in Drosophila. Current Biology, 2019, 29(21):3635-3646.(# equal contributions)
  3. Peter Bronk, Elena A. Kuklin, Srinivas Corur-Shandilya, Chang Liu, Timothy D. Wiggin, Martha L. Reed, Eve Marder, Leslie C. Griffith*. Regulation of Eag by calcium/calmodulin controls presynaptic excitability in Drosophila. Journal of Neurophysiology. 2018;119(5):1665-1680. Doi:10.1152/jn.00820.2017
  4. Chang Liu, Paula R. Haynes, Nathan C. Donelson, Shani Aharon, Leslie C. Griffith*. Sleep in populations of Drosophila melanogaster. eNeuro, 2015, 2 (4) e0071-15.2015
  5. Zhiqiang Meng*, Chang Liu, Chengyang Yu, Yuanye Ma*. Transcranial direct current stimulation of the frontal-pariental-temporal area attenuates smoking behavior. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 2014 Jul; 54:19-25
  6. Chang Liu, Pierre-Yves Plaçais, Nobuhiro Yamagata, Barret D. Pfeiffer, Yoshinori Aso,Anja B.  Friedrich, Igor Siwanowicz, Gerald M. Rubin, Thomas Préat, Hiromu Tanimoto. A subset of dopamine neurons signals reward for odour memory in Drosophila. Nature, 2012, 488(7412):512-6
  7. Yu Mao, Shangchuan Yang, Chang Liu, Xintian Hu*. Effects of propranolol on acquisition and retrieval of morphine-induced conditioned place preference memories in ICR mice. Zoology Research. 2011, 32(6):670-4 (in Chinese)
  8. Zhiqiang Meng, Chang Liu, Xintian Hu*, Yuanye Ma*. Irregular morphine administration affects the retention but not acquisition of conditioned place preference in rats. Brain Research, 2010, 1311: 86-92
  9. Zhiqiang Meng#, Chang Liu#, Xintian Hu*, Yuanye Ma*. Somatosensory cortices are required for morphine-induced conditioned place preference in rats. PLoS ONE, 2009, 4(11):e7742 (# equal contributions)

Research Interests

Sleep, learning and memory are complex phenomena that are of great importance for survival. Although the quantity and quality of sleep have a profound impact on learning and memory, the exact mechanisms are not known. Daily learning experience was suggested to be helpful to improve sleep. However, the interaction mechanism between the two systems is rarely understood. Dysfunctions in sleep and cognition are usually associated with neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease. To investigate the molecular and cellular basis of the interaction between sleep and memory, we will employ fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster as the animal model and apply multidisciplinary approach, including behavioral, genetic, anatomical and imaging techniques. We will also take the advantage of the platforms of BCBDI to study the same questions through cross-species verification.


  1. Monoamines in regulation of sleep and learning in Drosohila. CNS Neuroscince Technology 2019 conference2019.10.29-11.01,Shenzhen (Talk)
  2. A serotonin-modulated circuit controls sleep architecture in Drosophila.  The fifth China Drosophila Biology Conference,2019.08.15-08.17,Dalian(Talk)
  3. Serotonergic modulation of an ellipsoid body circuit controls sleep architecture in Drosophila. The 2018 Janelia Farm Campus Conference on Structure and Function of the Insect Central Complex. 2018.10.28-31 (poster)
  4. Experience modifies transient neuronal activity of MB extrinsic neurons. The 2017 Janelia Farm Campus Conference on Structure and Function of the Insect Mushroom Body. 2017.03.05-08 (poster)
  5. Serotonergic activity controls sleep architecture in Drosophila. 2016 Invited talk at University of Mississippi Medical Center. 2016.09.23.(invited talk)
  6. Serotonergic activity controls sleep architecture in Drosophila. The 2015 Cold Srping Harbor Laboratory Meeting on Neurobiology of Drosophila. 2015.09.29-10.02 (poster)
  7. Neural circuits underlying sleep and learning. The 2014 Janelia Farm Campus Conference on Structure and Function of the Insect Mushroom Body. 2014.04.27-30 (poster)
  8. Characterizing sleep in populations of flies. The 2013 Volen Center for Complex Systems Annual Retreat. Boston. (Poster)
  9. A subset of dopaminergic neurons signal reward in Drosophila melanogaster. The 2012 53rd Annual Drosophila Research Conference.  2012.03.07-11, Chicago, IL. (poster)
  10. Identification of dopaminergic neurons in reward signaling. The 2011 Champalimaud Neuroscience Symposium. 2011.09.18-21, Champalimaud Centre, Lisbon, Portugal. (Poster)  
  11. Dopamine signals appetitive and aversive reinforcement in Drosophila.The 2011 Ninth Göttingen Meeting of the German Neuroscience Society. 2011.03.23-26. Gottingen, Germany. (Poster)


Master & Ph.D

Qualifications and Requirements
  1. Biological or medical background; working experience in a molecular biology laboratory, or Matlab/Pathon programming 
  2. with a strong interest in neurobiology. 
  3. Good physical and mental health.
  4. Self-driven and strong capability of working independently.Hard, rigorous, serious, have the courage to challenge.