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.


Singh B, Covelo A, Martell-Martínez H, Nanclares C, Sherman MA, Okematti E, Meints J, Teravskis PJ, Gallardo C, Savonenko AV, Benneyworth MA, Lesné SE, Liao D, Araque A, Lee MK. Tau is required for progressive synaptic and memory deficits in a transgenic mouse model of α-synucleinopathy. Acta Neuropathol. 2019 Oct;138(4):551-574. PMCID: PMC6778173

Teravskis PJ, Covelo A, Miller EC, Singh B, Martell-Martínez HA, Benneyworth MA, Gallardo C, Oxnard BR, Araque A, Lee MK, Liao D. A53T Mutant Alpha-Synuclein Induces Tau-Dependent Postsynaptic Impairment Independently of Neurodegenerative Changes. J Neurosci. 2018 Nov 7;38(45):9754-9767. PMCID: PMC6222065

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