Staff Profiles

Meanhwan Kim, Ph.D.

Senior Scientist

Meanhwan Kim joined the Allen Institute for Brain Science in 2017 to support the Human Cell Types program. He is contributing on the institutional research efforts for identification and classification of cell types in human canonical circuits at molecular/cellular/circuits level. His expertise is implemented by looking at local connectivity in cortical column and their synaptic physiology/membrane biophysics in vitro and spike activities in vivo.

As a postdoctoral fellow, he worked with Dr. Thomas Mrsic-Flogel to discover the rules of connectivity of local and long-range projection neurons in mouse visual cortex at the Biozentrum, University of Basel. Previously he also worked with Dr. Henrique von Gersdorff to understand sensory neurotransmission, especially at ribbon-type synapses in retinal microcircuits at the Vollum Institute, Oregon Health & Science University. He received his Ph.D. in Physics from Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) and earned his B.S. in Physics from Sungkyunkwan University in South Korea.


Research Interests

My research is focused on understanding biophysical properties of single neurons, their rules of synaptic connectivity including strengths and dynamics, and corresponding functional roles in human neocortex. Hopefully this effort will help to understand the mechanisms of cortical computation and bridge the gap among different levels of cell types taxonomy. Ultimately I would like to understand structure-function relationships in human canonical circuits, then link this knowledge to decipher how our own brain works in normal and disease condition, and what makes our intelligence unique, also different from the other species.


  • Cellular signal transduction, membrane proteins
  • Synaptic transmission, exocytosis
  • Local and long-range synaptic connectivity

Research Programs

  • Human Cell Types
  • Synaptic physiology

Selected Publications View Publications

Local connectivity and synaptic dynamics in mouse and human neocortex

March 11, 2022

Campagnola L, Seeman SC, Chartrand T, Kim L, Hoggarth A, Gamlin C, Ito S, Trinh J, Davoudian P, Radaelli C, Kim MH, Hage T, Braun T, Alfiler L, Andrade J, Bohn P, Dalley R, Henry A, Kebede S, Alice M, Sandman D, Williams G, Larsen R, Teeter C, Daigle TL, Berry K, Dotson N, Enstrom R, Gorham M, Hupp M, Dingman Lee S, Ngo K, Nicovich PR, Potekhina L, Ransford S, Gary A, Goldy J, McMillen D, Pham T, Tieu M, Siverts L, Walker M, Farrell C, Schroedter M, Slaughterbeck C, Cobb C, Ellenbogen R, Gwinn RP, Keene CD, Ko AL, Ojemann JG, Silbergeld DL, Carey D, Casper T, Crichton K, Clark M, Dee N, Ellingwood L, Gloe J, Kroll M, Sulc J, Tung H, Wadhwani K, Brouner K, Egdorf T, Maxwell M, McGraw M, Pom CA, Ruiz A, Bomben J, Feng D, Hejazinia N, Shi S, Szafer A, Wakeman W, Phillips J, Bernard A, Esposito L, D'Orazi FD, Sunkin S, Smith K, Tasic B, Arkhipov A, Sorensen S, Lein E, Koch C, Murphy G, Zeng H, Jarsky T

Human neocortical expansion involves glutamatergic neuron diversification

October 6, 2021

Berg J, Sorensen SA, Ting JT, Miller JA, Chartrand T, Buchin A, Bakken TE, Budzillo A, Dee N, Ding SL, Gouwens NW, Hodge RD, Kalmbach B, Lee C, Lee BR, Alfiler L, Baker K, Barkan E, Beller A, Berry K, Bertagnolli D, Bickley K, Bomben J, Braun T, Brouner K, Casper T, Chong P, Crichton K, Dalley R, de Frates R, Desta T, Lee SD, D'Orazi F, Dotson N, Egdorf T, Enstrom R, Farrell C, Feng D, Fong O, Furdan S, Galakhova AA, Gamlin C, Gary A, Glandon A, Goldy J, Gorham M, Goriounova NA, Gratiy S, Graybuck L, Gu H, Hadley K, Hansen N, Heistek TS, Henry AM, Heyer DB, Hill D, Hill C, Hupp M, Jarsky T, Kebede S, Keene L, Kim L, Kim MH, Kroll M, Latimer C, Levi BP, Link KE, Mallory M, Mann R, Marshall D, Maxwell M, McGraw M, McMillen D, Melief E, Mertens EJ, Mezei L, Mihut N, Mok S, Molnar G, Mukora A, Ng L, Ngo K, Nicovich PR, Nyhus J, Olah G, Oldre A, Omstead V, Ozsvar A, Park D, Peng H, Pham T, Pom CA, Potekhina L, Rajanbabu R, Ransford S, Reid D, Rimorin C, Ruiz A, Sandman D, Sulc J, Sunkin SM, Szafer A, Szemenyei V, Thomsen ER, Tieu M, Torkelson A, Trinh J, Tung H, Wakeman W, Waleboer F, Ward K, Wilbers R, Williams G, Yao Z, Yoon JG, Anastassiou C, Arkhipov A, Barzo P, Bernard A, Cobbs C, de Witt Hamer PC, Ellenbogen RG, Esposito L, Ferreira M, Gwinn RP, Hawrylycz MJ, Hof PR, Idema S, Jones AR, Keene CD, Ko AL, Murphy GJ, Ng L, Ojemann JG, Patel AP, Phillips JW, Silbergeld DL, Smith K, Tasic B, Yuste R, Segev I, de Kock CPJ, Mansvelder HD, Tamas G, Zeng H, Koch C, Lein ES

Segregated subnetworks of intracortical projection neurons in primary visual cortex.

December 19, 2018

Kim MH, Znamenskiy P, Iacaruso MF, Mrsic-Flogel TD

Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis at the Dendritic Lobules of an Inhibitory Interneuron in the Mammalian Retina

August 5, 2015

Balakrishnan V, Puthussery T, Kim MH, Taylor WR, von Gersdorff H

Single Ca2+ channels and exocytosis at sensory synapses

Journal of Physiology
July 1, 2013

Kim MH, Li GL, von Gersdorff H

Paired-pulse plasticity in the strength and latency of light-evoked lateral inhibition to retinal bipolar cell terminals

Journal of Neuroscience
August 22, 2012

Vickers E, Kim MH, Vigh J, von Gersdorff H

Protease-activated receptor-2 increases exocytosis via multiple signal transduction pathways in pancreatic duct epithelial cells

The Journal of Biological Chemistry
July 4, 2008

Kim MH, Choi BH, Jung SR, Sernka TJ, Kim S, Kim KT, Hille B, Nguyen TD, Koh DS

Glutamate transporter-mediated glutamate secretion in the mammalian pineal gland

Journal of Neuroscience
October 22, 2008

Kim MH, Uehara S, Muroyama A, Hille B, Moriyama Y, Koh DS