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Jeansok Kim, Ph.D.


Degree From: University of California, Los Angeles

Interests: Neurobiology of Fear, Stress, and Aging Brain


Office Guthrie 321
Phone (206) 616-2685
Website(s) Website


Do I accept and train new psychology graduate students in general?
Am I accepting new graduate students in the upcoming year?
I am POSSIBLY accepting graduate students in 2022-2023, please contact me directly with questions
Advising Areas:
Behavioral Neuroscience


Stress and fear play important roles in our lives, from influencing daily behaviors to precipitating symptoms of mental health disorders. My laboratory is performing multi-level analyses toward understanding the neurobiology of stress and fear. Specifically, we investigate how stress alters hippocampal plasticity and multiple brain-memory systems, and how fear memories are formed. These investigations consist of employing lesion, intra-cerebral drug infusion, and in vitro and in vivo neurophysiological recording techniques. Recently, we began employing 'predator-like' robots and 'closed economy' (self-contained living setting comprised of safe nest and dangerous foraging zones) to investigate defensive behaviors of rats in semi-naturalistic, dynamic risky environments. These ecologically-relevant studies address the neuronal basis of the basic approach-avoid conflicts that contribute to human psychopathologies.

Selected Publications

  • Kim EJ, Park M, Kong M-S, Park SG, Cho J & Kim JJ (2015) Alterations of hippocampal place cells in foraging rats facing a 'predatory' threat. Current Biology 25: 1-6.
  • Kim E, Kim EJ, Yeh R, Shin M, Bobman J, Krasne FB & Kim JJ (2014) Amygdaloid and non-amygdaloid fear both influence avoidance of risky foraging in hungry rats. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 281: 20133357.
  • Kim EJ, Horovitz O, Pellman BA, Tan LM, Li Q, Richter-Levin G & Kim JJ (2013) Dorsal periaqueductal gray-amygdala pathway conveys both innate and learned fear responses in rats. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110: 14795-14800.
  • Kim EJ, Kim E, Park M, Cho J & Kim JJ (2012) Amygdalar stimulation produces alterations on firing properties of hippocampal place cells. Journal of Neuroscience 32: 11424-11434.
  • Choi J-S & Kim JJ (2010) Amygdala regulates risk of predation in rats foraging in a dynamic fear environment. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107: 21773-21777.
  • Kim JJ, Lee HJ, Wellday AC, Song EY, Cho J, Sharp PE, Jung MW and Blair TH (2007) Stress-induced alterations in hippocampal plasticity, place cells and spatial memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 104: 18297-18302.
  • Kim JJ and Diamond DM (2002) The stressed hippocampus, synaptic plasticity and lost memories. Nature Reviews Neuroscience 3: 453-462.

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