Dr Ko-Fan Chen joined the University of Leicester in July 2020, this is Dr Chen’s first independent position, investigating the visual control of sleep and its interaction with neurodegeneration.
Originally from Taiwan, Dr Chen completed BSc and MSc degrees in Biology and Physiology at National Cheng Kung University, before moving to the UK to Ralf Stanewsky’s lab at Queen Mary University, London, for a PhD investigating the molecular basis of circadian light entrainment.
Dr Chen’s first postdoctoral appointment was at Damian Crowther's lab at the University of Cambridge, investigating how rhythmic light regimes alter processes underlying age-related neurodegeneration. This involved developing a new method for simultaneously detecting the decline of molecular and behavioural oscillations during age-dependant neurodegeneration in a fly model.
This was followed by a move to James Jepson’s lab in the UCL Institute of Neurology to investigate Drosophila Dystonia models, and to continue exploring how variable light-dark cycles modify normal and disease related sleep-wake behaviour.
2021 Kratschmer, P., Lowe, S. A., Buhl, E., Chen, K. F., Kullmann, D. M., Pittman, A., & Jepson, J. E. Impaired Pre‐Motor Circuit Activity and Movement in a Drosophila Model of KCNMA1‐Linked Dyskinesia. Movement Disorders 36(5) 1158-1169.
2021 Putker, M., Wong, D. C., Seinkmane, E., Rzechorzek, N. M., Zeng, A., Hoyle, N. P., .Chen, K. F.. & O’Neill J. S. CRYPTOCHROMES confer robustness not rhythmicity to circadian timekeeping. The EMBO journal 40(7) e106745.
2019 Chen, K.-F., Lowe., S, Lamaze, A., Krätschmer, P., Jepson, J.E.C. Neurocalcin regulates nighttime sleep and arousal in Drosophila. eLife 8 e38114
2018 Lamaze, A., Krätschmer, P*., Chen, K.-F.*, Lowe, S., Jepson, J.E.C. Wake-promoting circadian output circuit in Drosophila. Current Biology 28 (19) 3098-3105.
2018 Younan, N.D., Chen, K.-F., Rose, R.S., Crowther, D.C., Viles, J.H. Prion protein stabilizes amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers and enhances Aβ neurotoxicity in a Drosophila model of Alzheimer’s disease. Journal of Biological Chemistry 293 (34)13090-13099
2016 Khabirova, E.*, Chen, K.-F.*, O’Neill, J.S., and Crowther, D.C. Flyglow: Single-fly observations of simultaneous molecular and behavioural circadian oscillations in controls and an Alzheimer’s model. Scientific Reports 6. 33759.
2016 Buhl, E., Bradlaugh, A., Ogueta, M., Chen, K.-F., Stanewsky, R., and Hodge, J.J. Quasimodo mediates daily and acute light effects on Drosophila clock neuron excitability. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 113 13486-13491
2014 Chen, K.-F., Possidente, B., Lomas, D.A., and Crowther, D.C. The central molecular clock is robust in the face of behavioural arrhythmia in a Drosophila model of Alzheimer’s disease. Disease Models & Mechanisms 7 445-458
2011 Chen, K.-F.*, Peschel, N*., Zavodska, R., Sehadova, H., and Stanewsky, R.. QUASIMODO a Novel GPI-Anchored Zona Pellucida Protein Involved in Light Input to the Drosophila Circadian Clock. Current Biology 21 (9) 719-729
2009 Landskron, J*., Chen, K.-F.*, Wolf, E., and Stanewsky, R.. A role for the PERIOD: PERIOD homodimer in the Drosophila circadian clock. PLOS Biology 7 (4) e1000003
Dr Chen currently contributes and co-convenes lectures and practicals in the second year module BS2026, as well as coordinating and supervising third year research projects.