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Dr Saad Hannan
Medical Sciences Building
UCL Gower Street
Tel: 02076797660
  • Research Associate
  • Neuro, Physiology & Pharmacology
  • Div of Biosciences
  • Faculty of Life Sciences

I graduated in Biology from UCL in 2007 and joined Professor Trevor G. Smart's lab as a Dorothy Hodgkin Postgraduate Scholar to undertake a PhD where I developed live cell imaging strategies to monitor the real-time trafficking of neurotransmitter receptors. After my PhD, I was awarded a Rosetrees Trust Postdoctoral Grant to study the dysfunction of GABAergic neurotransmission in a new mouse model of Down syndrome in collaboration with Professor Elizabeth M. C. Fisher (Institute of Neurology, UCL) and Professor Victor Tybulewicz (Francis Crick Institute).

Research Themes
Research Summary
As a neuroscientist, I routinely apply techniques such as electrophysiology, single particle tracking of Quantum Dots, live cell imaging and molecular biology to address questions of biological significance.

My current research has four broad aims:

1. To identify the mechanism by which inhibitory neurotransmission leads to cognitive impairment in Down syndrome,
2. To characterise the developmental and maturation defects in iPSC-derived neurons from Down syndrome individuals,

3. To understand the role of inhibitory neurotransmission in dendritic spine plasticity,

4. To study how the cell surface lateral diffusion of GABA receptors are dynamically regulated during normal synaptic transmission and pathophysiological conditions such as excitotoxicity.

Teaching Summary

Undergraduate teaching - lectures, tutorials and laboratory demonstrations in:

PHAR1001 (Pharmacology: An Introduction to Mechanisms of Drug Action)
PHAR2002/2005 (General and Systematic Pharmacology)
PHAR3001/3002 (Neuropharmacology)

Research training - Undergraduate and Postgraduate (Masters and PhD) student supervision and laboratory training in electrophysiology, imaging and molecular biology 

Academic Background
2018 FHEA ATQ03 - Recognised by the HEA as a Fellow – Teaching and Learning in Higher Education University College London
2011 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Neuroscience and Pharmacology University College London
2007 BSc Hons Bachelor of Science (Honours) – Biology University College London
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