Mala Murthy, Ph.D.

Mol Bio/Princeton Neuroscience Institute

Dr. Murthy has a broad background in the fields of genetics, molecular biology, and neuroscience. She was an undergraduate at MIT, where she majored in Biology and completed her senior thesis on the genetics of aging in yeast in Dr. Leonard Guarente’s lab. As a graduate student in Neuroscience at Stanford University (in Dr. Tom Schwarz’s lab), she studied vesicle trafficking mechanisms in the fruit fly, Drosophila. As a Helen Hay Whitney postdoctoral fellow at Caltech in Dr. Gilles Laurent’s lab, she studied the neural codes, or patterns of electrical activity, underlying odor detection in flies. As an Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular Biology and Princeton Neuroscience Institute at Princeton University, her lab is focused on both olfactory and auditory perception in flies. The Murthy lab uses a combination of genetics, behavior, in vivo electrophysiology and functional imaging, comparative approaches, and computational methods to address how the brain converts sensory stimuli (such as odors and sounds) into meaningful representations, and how these representations are then used to drive behavioral responses. Dr. Murthy is the recipient of several early investigator awards, including ones from the National Science Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Klingenstein Fund, and the McKnight Foundation. 

Murthy Lab: