Balvindar Singh

Singh Balvindar Headshot


Entering Class:


University of California, San Diego
Microbiology/Bacteriology major
B.S., 2011

University of Minnesota
Neuroscience Graduate Program
Ph.D., 2019

MSTP Student Governance:

  • Retreat Planning Committee 2014, 2015
  • Student Advisory Committee 2014-2016

Thesis Advisor: Michael Lee, PhD

Thesis Research

Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative disorder characterized by intracellular inclusions called Lewy bodies, the loss of neurons at selective brain regions, and a clinical presentation of motor dysfunction. However, disease pathology in the brain can extend beyond these select regions and is thought to underlie the non-motor abnormalities affecting many PD patients, including dementia. Understanding the mechanism by which α-synuclein, a key component of Lewy bodies and pathogenic mediator of neurodegeneration in PD, contributes to nervous system dysfunction, synaptic changes, and cognitive deficits will enhance our knowledge of disease pathophysiology and progression. This, in turn, holds significant potential to aid in the identification of new biomarkers and targets for therapeutic intervention in neurodegenerative disease, including PD.


Work prior to entering the Program:

Michaelson JJ, Shi Y, Gujral M, Zheng H, Malhotra D, Jin X, Jian M, Liu G, Greer D, Bhandari A, Wu W, Corominas R, Peoples A, Koren A, Gore A, Kang S, Lin GN, Estabillo J, Gadomski T, Singh B, Zhang K, Akshoomoff N, Corsello C, McCarroll S, Iakoucheva LM, Li Y, Wang J, Sebat J. Whole-genome sequencing in autism identifies hot spots for de novo germline mutation. Cell. 2012 Dec 21;151(7):1431-42. PMCID: PMC3712641