Pamela J. Lein, Ph.D. - IDDRC Investigator

Pamela J. Lein, Ph.D.Director, UC Davis CounterACT Center of Excellence, Director, NIEHS Training program in Environmental Health Sciences, Chair, Pharmacology and Toxicology Graduate Group, Professor and Vice-Chair, Department of Molecular Biosciences, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine
Department of Molecular Biosciences
UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine
1089 Veterinary Medicine Drive, 2009 VM3B
Davis, California 95616

Phone: 530-752-1970 / Fax: 530-752-7690

Areas of Interest

Autism Spectrum Disorders, Developmental Neurotoxicology, Gene X Environment Interactions, Neuronal Connectivity, Persistent Organic Pollutants, Pesticides


Pamela Lein is the Co- director of the IDDRC Biological Analysis Core, Director of the UC Davis Center CounterACT Center of Excellence and faculty member of the Center for Children’s Environmental Health. Dr. Lein’s research is focused on characterizing how developmental neurotoxicants interfere with normal neurodevelopment, and how these may interact with genes of susceptibility to influence the risk and/or severity of neurodevelopmental disorders. She is also interested in the relationship between immune development and neurodevelopment, and how environmental exposures may disrupt the normal relationship between these two systems in development. Current projects are focused on understanding how organophosphate pesticides (OPs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and autism-related immune factors alter normal patterns of neuronal connectivity.

Current IDDRC Projects

  • UC Davis Center for Children’s Environmental Health, NIH/NIEHS, 2 P01 ES011269-11; EPA Log Number HQ-R-000
  • Molecular and Cellular Basis of PCB Developmental Neurotoxicity, NIH/NIEHS R01 ES014901
  • Enantioselective Metabolism Influences PCB Developmental Neurotoxicity, NIH/NIEHS R01 ES017425 Novel anticonvulsant and neuroprotective therapies for TETS and OP intoxication, NIH/NINDS U54 NS079202
  • Identification and scientific validation of AOPs involving genomic and nongenomic intracellular thyroid hormone signaling in neurodevelopment, EPA G12F10224

Recent Representative Publications

  • Yang D, Kania-Korwel I, Ghogha A, Chen H, Stamou M, Bose DD, Pessah IN, Lehmler HJ, Lein PJ (2014) PCB136 atropselectively alters morphometric and functional parameters of neuronal connectivity in cultured rat hippocampal neurons via ryanodine receptor-dependent mechanisms. Toxicol Sci, in press.
  • Lesiak A, Zhu M, Chen H, Appleyard SM, Impey S, Lein PJ*, Wayman GA (2014) The environmental neurotoxicant PCB 95 promotes synaptogenesis via ryanodine receptor-dependent miR132 upregulation. J Neurosci 34(3): 717-25. *Corresponding author
  • Stamou M, Streifel KM, Goines PE and Lein PJ (2013) Neuronal connectivity as a convergent target of gene-environment interactions that confer risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders.  Neurotoxicol Teratol 36: 3-16. PMC3610799
  • Wayman GA, Yang D, Bose DD, Lesiak A, Ledoux V, Bruun D, Pessah IN, Lein PJ (2012) PCB 95 promotes dendritic growth via ryanodine receptor-dependent mechanisms. Environ Health Perspect 120(7): 997-1002. PMC3404670
  • Wayman GA, Bose DD, Yang D, Lesiak A, Bruun D, Impey S, Ledoux V, Pessah IN, Lein PJ (2012) PCB 95 modulates calcium-dependent signaling pathway responsible for activity-dependent dendritic growth. Environ Health Perspect 120(7):1003-9. PMC3404671