LIU Chang

LIU Chang

Ph.D, Principal Investigator
Investigates neural mechanisms of sleep, learning and memory


Positions available in the Liu Lab at SIAT

The lab has open positions for ambitious and highly motivated postdoctoral research fellows to investigate the molecular mechanisms and neural circuits of sleep and cognition as well as exploring novel biomarkers for the diagnosis and prognosis underlying Alzheimer’s disease. Candidate’s CV and two referees’ contact information should be sent to

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Sleep and memory are time-dependent, complex, and important physiological functions. Memory and sleep are inextricably linked: cognitive deficits are often associated with sleep disorders (such as Alzheimer's disease), and sleep abnormalities can cause functional deficits at the molecular, cellular, physiological, and cognitive levels. Although memory formation has been shown impaired after sleep deprivation, more evidence support memory consolidation is attributed to sleep. However, the spatiotemporal co-regulation of memory coding and sleep is still difficult, and the biological basis of sleep and memory, especially the integrated circuit mechanism is still unclear. To study the molecular and cellular basis of the interaction between sleep and memory, and to explore new targets and strategies for diagnostic and therapeutic interventions for sleep disorders and cognitive decline, we use Drosophila melanogaster as the primary animal model and apply multidisciplinary approaches, including behavioral, genetic, anatomical, and imaging techniques, and utilize cross-cutting and advanced scientific research platforms to investigate the same questions through cross-species validation.


2019-         , Principal Investigator, SIAT CAS

2012-2019, Postdoctoral Fellow, Brandeis University

2007-2012, Ph.D. candidate, Kunming Institute of Zoology, CAS

                      Joint Ph.D. candidate, Max-Planck Institute of Neurobiology

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

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

1999-2003, BSc in Biology, Hebei Normal University

Selected publications

  1. Wei Yan#, Zijie Li#, Ziyi Lin, Shuqin Ji, William Ka Fai Tse,Zhiqiang Meng, Chang Liu*, Lei Li*. Microplastics exposure disturbed sleep structure, reduces the lifespan and ovary size of Drosophila melanogaster. Zoological Research, 2024, 45(4):805-822.
  2. Litao Wu, Chang Liu*. Integrated neural circuits of sleep and memory regulation in Current Opinion in Insect Science, 2023,59:101105.
  3. Wei Yan, Hai Lin, Junwei Yu, Timothy D. Wiggin, Litao Wu, Zhiqiang Meng, Chang Liu*, Leslie C. Griffith*. Subtype-specific roles of ellipsoid body ring neurons in sleep regulation in the Journal of Neuroscience, 2023, 43(5):764–786. (cover paper)
  4. Bo Chen, Chenyu Jiang, Xiaojuan Su, Chang Liu, Zhiqiang Meng, Yingjie Zhu*. The effect of pulsed electromagnetic field on the locomotor activity and neurotransmitters concentration in different brain regions of mice [J].Journal of Integration Technology, 2023, 12(2):1-9.
  5. Hualong Wang#, Guiqin Chen#, Eun Hee Ahn, Yiyuan Xia, Seong Su Kang, Xia Liu,Chang Liu, Ming-Hu Han, Shengdi Chen*, Keqiang Ye*. C/EBPβ/AEP is age-dependently activated in Parkinson’s disease and mediates α-Synuclein in the gut and brain. npj Parkinson's Disease, 2023, 9(1):1.
  6. Zhiqiang Meng*, Qing Li, Yuanye Ma, Chang Liu*. Transcranial current stimulation of the frontal-parietal-temporal brain areas reduces cigarette consumption in abstinent heroin users. Journal of Psychiatric Research,2022 doi:
  7. Qing Li, Yu Fu, Chang Liu*, Zhiqiang Meng*. Transcranial direct current stimulation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex for treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, 2022,16:893955.
  8. Wei Yan, Zhiqiang Meng*,Chang Liu*. Selective memory consolidation of the binary compound in feature discrimination tasks in Apis mellifera. Progress in Biochemistry and Biophysics, 2022, 49(7):1358-1368.
  9. Shiping Zhang,Linfang Wang, Shuanglong Yi, Shuhua Li, Honglei Wang, Li Song, Jiayao Ou, Min Zhang, Mengxiao Wang, Yuchen Zheng, Ruiqi Wang, Kai Yang, Tong Liu, Wei Yan, Chang Liu, Margaret S Ho*. Cyclin-G-associated kinase GAK/Aux orchestrates glial autophagy via Atg9 phosphorylation in Parkinson’s disease. BioRxiv, 2021 doi:
  10. Xi Jin, Yao Tian, Zi Chao Zhang, Pengyu Gu, Chang Liu, Junhai Han*. A subset of DN1p neurons integrates thermosensory inputs to promote wakefulness via CNMa signaling. Current Biology, 2021, 24;31(10):2075-2087.e6.
  11. 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, 117(18)10024-10034.
  12. 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.
  13. 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 Journal of Neurophysiology. 2018;119(5):1665-1680.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.