Professor Pankaj Sah has been appointed to the position of Director of the Queensland Brain Institute, beginning the role on 1 July 2015.

As a founding researcher and after eight years as QBI’s Deputy Director (Research), Professor Sah’s vision and passion for the continued success of QBI made him the outstanding candidate for the directorship.

“I am delighted to lead such an internationally recognised leader in neuroscience as the Queensland Brain Institute,” Professor Sah said.

“It’s an exciting time to be in neuroscience, and the research coming out of QBI is growing exponentially.

“Future success will build on the neurological understandings we are currently gaining, particularly with a focus on neural circuits.” 

Professor Sah also thanked QBI’s founding Director Professor Perry Bartlett for his contributions in establishing the Institute and driving its growth.

“QBI’s success owes a great deal to the strength of Professor Bartlett’s vision and leadership during the first 12 years of the Institute’s establishment,” he said.

Professor Bartlett stepped down from the role to focus on laboratory research.

“I’m thrilled that Professor Sah can continue to steer QBI to new achievements and discoveries,” Professor Bartlett said.

“Leading QBI has been an incredible journey and the greatest satisfaction in my career, and I look forward to playing a further part in its success.”

Professor Sah begins the role also serving as Director of the Science of Learning Research Centre—an ARC Special Research Initiative—and is the current recipient of an NHMRC Principal Research Fellowship.

He is the Editor-in-Chief of the new Nature Partner Journal npj Science of Learning, and sits on the editorial board of another six journals.

His research focusses on the amygdala, which is central to processing emotions and memory form­ation in humans.

Professor Sah’s work specifically looks to understand the physiology of excitatory synapses and synaptic plasticity in the amygdala, and also uses electrophys­iological recordings in humans.