Dr. Choi was born and raised in South Korea and received his B.S. and M.S. from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), where he studied molecular mechanisms underlying dendritic spine formation. He obtained his Ph.D. at Harvard University, where he studied behavioral arousal and quiescence in C. elegans. As a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Choi studied ascending spinal pathways that convey touch and pain signals to the brain.

Dr. Choi joined the Department of Psychiatry in July 2022.


Korea Adv Inst of Sci & Tech (2004), Biological Sciences
Graduate School
Korea Adv Inst of Sci & Tech (2006), Biological Sciences
Graduate School
Harvard University (2013), Genetics

Research Interest

  • Dysfunction of ascending somatosensory pathways in diseases
  • Functional organization of ascending somatosensory circuitry
  • State-dependent changes in the sense of touch and pain


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Cell type-specific manipulation with GFP-dependent Cre recombinase.
Tang JC, Rudolph S, Dhande OS, Abraira VE, Choi S, Lapan SW, Drew IR, Drokhlyansky E, Huberman AD, Regehr WG, Cepko CL, Nat Neurosci 2015 Sep 18 9 1334-41
Sensory Neurons Arouse C. elegans Locomotion via Both Glutamate and Neuropeptide Release.
Choi S, Taylor KP, Chatzigeorgiou M, Hu Z, Schafer WR, Kaplan JM PLoS Genet. 2015 Jul 11 7 e1005359
The adhesion protein IgSF9b is coupled to neuroligin 2 via S-SCAM to promote inhibitory synapse development.
Woo J, Kwon SK, Nam J, Choi S, Takahashi H, Krueger D, Park J, Lee Y, Bae JY, Lee D, Ko J, Kim H, Kim MH, Bae YC, Chang S, Craig AM, Kim E J. Cell Biol. 2013 Jun 201 6 929-44
Analysis of NPR-1 reveals a circuit mechanism for behavioral quiescence in C. elegans.
Choi S, Chatzigeorgiou M, Taylor KP, Schafer WR, Kaplan JM, Neuron 2013 Jun 78 5 869-80
Neurexin and neuroligin mediate retrograde synaptic inhibition in C. elegans.
Hu Z, Hom S, Kudze T, Tong XJ, Choi S, Aramuni G, Zhang W, Kaplan JM Science 2012 Aug 337 6097 980-4
Trans-synaptic adhesion between NGL-3 and LAR regulates the formation of excitatory synapses.
Woo J, Kwon SK, Choi S, Kim S, Lee JR, Dunah AW, Sheng M, Kim E, Nat Neurosci 2009 Apr 12 4 428-37
ARF6 and EFA6A regulate the development and maintenance of dendritic spines.
Choi S, Ko J, Lee JR, Lee HW, Kim K, Chung HS, Kim H, Kim E, J Neurosci 2006 May 26 18 4811-9

Honors & Awards

  • CPRIT Recruitment of First-Time, Tenure-Track Faculty Members Awards
  • Neuron-Anuradha Rao Memorial Award
  • The AKN (Association of Korean Neuroscientists) Postdoctoral Award
  • The Alice and Joseph Brooks Fund Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • The Kwanjeong Educational Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship
  • The Kim Bo Jeong Master¬ís degree Fellowship