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Alex Kwan, PhD

Associate Professor Adjunct of Psychiatry

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Alex Kwan, PhD



Alex Kwan is an Associate Professor in the Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering at Cornell University. Before moving to Cornell in 2022, he was an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine.

He received a B.A.Sc. in Engineering Physics from Simon Fraser University and a Ph.D. in Applied Physics from Cornell University. At Cornell, he developed nonlinear optical microscopes in the laboratory of Watt Webb. In 2009, he went to the University of California, Berkeley to work in the laboratory of Yang Dan, where he studied cortical microcircuits.

Research in the Kwan lab focuses on the mouse medial frontal cortex. We are interested in how dendritic plasticity may underlie the actions of psychiatric drugs and how cortical circuits enable flexible decision-making. Our expertise lies in developing and applying optical methods to record and control neural activity in behaving mice.

Education & Training

  • Postdoctoral
    University of California, Berkeley (2009 - 2013) (2013)
  • PhD
    Cornell University (2009)
  • MS
    Cornell University (2007)
  • BS
    Simon Fraser University (2003)

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