Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center


Cells, Circuits, & Systems


The Cells, Circuits and Systems Analysis Core provides essential services to the IDDRC community to foster research into the functional consequences of developmental disorders. The Core consists of two main components: 1) Neurophysiological Assessment and 2) Cellular and Organoid Modeling.
The need for physiological assessments was generated by IDDRC faculty who required electrophysiological studies beyond collaborations. These electrophysiological assessments consist of experiments performed in brain slices, acutely isolated neurons, in cultures or in vivo, providing a functional analysis of changes in neurons, local circuits and microcircuits induced primarily by genetic alterations in cellular, mouse or rat models. The Core will continue to assist Investigators with functional analysis at the cellular, circuit, and systems level using state-of-the-art electrophysiology, optogenetic recording methods both in in vitro and in vivo preparations and miniscopes.

Recent advances in both genomic and stem cell technologies, particularly human embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells (hESC and hiPSC), have opened the door to new approaches in IDD research based on human cells.  A significant challenge remains to translate this promise into new discoveries about the basis of IDD and therapies.
The second objective of this Core will be to facilitate this process by assisting IDDRC investigators to produce, propagate, and differentiate hESC and hiPSC, (collectively hPSC) into neural and glial cell types of interest as well as brain organoids to create in vitro models of IDD. Another function of the Core is to work with investigators and molecular screening resources available at UCLA to harness the potential of these in vitro models for drug discovery. 

Our Team


Janel LeBelle, PhD


Michael Condro, PhD