The McGovern Institute for Brain Research has announced the appointment of Feng Zhang as a McGovern Investigator, starting in spring 2011. Zhang, an expert on genetic control of brain function, will also become an assistant professor in MIT's Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and a Core Member of the Broad Institute.
Zhang is currently a junior fellow at Harvard University's Society of Fellows, and obtained his PhD from Stanford University. While working with Karl Deisseroth at Stanford, he helped to pioneer the use of optogenetic tools for manipulating brain activity with light. Zhang’s current work focuses on applying synthetic biology methods to the study of brain disease, through the manipulation of brain development and function.