• Powell earned both his Ph.D. in Neuroscience and M.D. with Honor at Baylor College of Medicine in 1994 and 1997 respectively. His graduate work was among the first to measure lasting biochemical changes during long-lasting synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. After his medical internship year at Baylor College of Medicine, Dr. Powell trained at the University of California San Francisco Neurology Residency Program. In his final year, he was selected as Chief Resident at UCSF. From there, he returned to UT Southwestern Medical Center as a professor and served in several roles before holding his current leadership positions.

    “With my laboratory’s longstanding focus on autism, intellectual disability, and cognitive dysfunction in general, the opportunity to lead the UAB Civitan International Research Center is a great honor,” said Powell. “As a physician and a scientist, I am uniquely poised to leverage the existing clinical research strengths at UAB and Children’s of Alabama to move our neurobiology discoveries out of the laboratory and into the clinics to help patients and their families.”
  • Selected Publications

    Academic Article

    Year Title Altmetric
    2022 “Déjà vu” in an autism gene mouse model modifies social moresNeuron.  110:1433-1435. 2022
    2022 Strong evidence for genotype-phenotype correlations in Phelan-McDermid syndrome: Results from the developmental synaptopathies consortiumHuman Molecular Genetics.  31:625-637. 2022
    2021 Parent-reported measure of repetitive behavior in Phelan-McDermid syndromeJournal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders.  13. 2021
    2021 Neuropathological Effects of Chemotherapeutic DrugsACS Chemical Neuroscience.  12:3038-3048. 2021
    2021 Shifted phase of EEG cross-frequency coupling in individuals with Phelan-McDermid syndrome.Molecular Autism.  12:29. 2021
    2020 Psychometric Study of the Social Responsiveness Scale in Phelan–McDermid Syndrome 2020
    2020 Diffusion Tensor Imaging Abnormalities in the Uncinate Fasciculus and Inferior Longitudinal Fasciculus in Phelan-McDermid SyndromePediatric Neurology.  106:24-31. 2020
    2020 Early restoration of shank3 expression in Shank3 knock-out mice prevents core asd-like behavioral phenotypeseNeuro.  7:1-22. 2020
    2019 Apparent genetic rescue of adult shank3 exon 21 insertion mutation mice tempered by appropriate control experimentseNeuro.  6. 2019
    2019 Volumetric Analysis of the Basal Ganglia and Cerebellar Structures in Patients with Phelan-McDermid SyndromePediatric Neurology.  90:37-43. 2019
    2018 Pitt-Hopkins Syndrome: A Review of Current Literature, Clinical Approach, and 23-Patient Case SeriesJournal of Child Neurology.  33:233-244. 2018
    2018 Genetic background effects in Neuroligin-3 mutant mice: Minimal behavioral abnormalities on C57 background 2018
    2017 Spatial gene expression analysis of neuroanatomical differences in mouse modelsNeuroImage.  163:220-230. 2017
    2017 Kctd13 deletion reduces synaptic transmission via increased RhoANature.  551:227-231. 2017
    2017 Foxp1 in forebrain pyramidal neurons controls gene expression required for spatial learning and synaptic plasticity 2017
    2017 Mum's bacteria linked to baby's behaviourNature.  549:466-467. 2017
    2017 Laquinimod has no effects on brain volume or cellular CNS composition in the F1 3xTg-AD/C3H mouse model of Alzheimer's diseaseJournal of Neuroimmunology.  309:100-110. 2017
    2017 Arid1b haploinsufficient mice reveal neuropsychiatric phenotypes and reversible causes of growth impairmenteLife.  6. 2017
    2017 Novel Shank3 mutant exhibits behaviors with face validity for autism and altered striatal and hippocampal function 2017
    2016 Autism screening or smoke screen and mirrors?JAMA Neurology.  73:386-387. 2016
    2016 Altered Striatal Synaptic Function and Abnormal Behaviour in Shank3 Exon4-9 Deletion Mouse Model of Autism 2016
    2015 Increased cortical inhibition in Autism-Linked neuroligin-3R451C mice is due in part to loss of endocannabinoid signalingPLoS One.  10. 2015
    2015 Autism-associated insertion mutation (InsG) of shank3 exon 21 causes impaired synaptic transmission and behavioral deficits 2015
    2015 Erratum to "Chronic P7C3 treatment restores hippocampal neurogenesis in the Ts65Dn mouse model of Down syndrome" [Neurosci. Lett., 591 (2015) 86-92], doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2015.02.008Neuroscience Letters.  597:25. 2015
    2015 Chronic P7C3 treatment restores hippocampal neurogenesisNeuroscience Letters.  591:86-92. 2015
    2015 Clustering autism: Using neuroanatomical differences in 26 mouse models to gain insight into the heterogeneityMolecular Psychiatry.  20:118-125. 2015
    2015 3D visualization of the regional differencesMolecular Psychiatry.  20. 2015
    2015 Neuroligin 1 modulates striatal glutamatergic neurotransmission in a pathway and NMDAR subunit-specific mannerFrontiers in Synaptic Neuroscience.  7. 2015
    2014 PTEN knockdown alters dendritic spine/protrusion morphology, not densityJournal of Comparative Neurology.  522:1171-1190. 2014
    2014 Autism-Related Neuroligin-3 Mutation Alters Social Behavior and Spatial Learning 2014
    2014 Developmental and adult GAP-43 deficiency in mice dynamically alters hippocampal neurogenesis and mossy fiber volumeDevelopmental Neuroscience.  36:44-63. 2014
    2013 Loss of predominant shank3 isoforms results in hippocampus-dependent impairments in behavior and synaptic transmission 2013
    2013 Pearls and Oy-sters: Acute ischemic stroke caused by atypical thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpuraNeurology.  80. 2013
    2013 Interfering with the reconsolidation of traumatic memory: Sirolimus as a novel agent for treating veterans with posttraumatic stress disorderAnnals of Clinical Psychiatry.  25:33-40. 2013
    2012 Functional and mechanistic exploration of an adult neurogenesis-promoting small molecule 2012
    2012 Region-specific deletions of RIM1 reproduce a subset of global RIM1α -/- phenotypesGenes, Brain and Behavior.  11:201-213. 2012
    2012 Delayed reduction of hippocampal synaptic transmission and spines following exposure to repeated subclinical doses of organophosphorus pesticide in adult miceToxicological Sciences.  125:196-208. 2012
    2011 Deletion of the hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated channel auxiliary subunit TRIP8b impairs hippocampal Ih localization and function and promotes antidepressant behavior in mice 2011
    2011 Block of glucocorticoid synthesis during re-activation inhibits extinction of an established fear memoryNeurobiology of Learning and Memory.  95:453-460. 2011
    2011 Temporally specified genetic ablation of neurogenesis impairs cognitive recovery after traumatic brain injury 2011
    2010 Effects of exogenous glucocorticoid on combat-related PTSD symptomsAnnals of Clinical Psychiatry.  22:274-279. 2010
    2010 Lowering β-amyloid levels rescues learning and memory in a down syndrome mouse modelPLoS One.  5. 2010
    2010 RIM1α and interacting proteins involved in presynaptic plasticity mediate prepulse inhibition and additional behaviors linked to schizophrenia 2010
    2010 Neuroligin-1 deletion results in impaired spatial memory and increased repetitive behavior 2010
    2010 A molecular mechanism for ibuprofen-mediated RhoA inhibition in neurons 2010
    2009 Mouse neurexin-1α deletion causes correlated electrophysiological and behavioral changes consistent with cognitive impairments 2009
    2009 A neuroligin-4 missense mutation associated with autism impairs neuroligin-4 folding and endoplasmic reticulum export 2009
    2009 Disparate diseases due to copycat copy number variationsJAMA Neurology.  66:1158-1159. 2009
    2009 Regulation of hippocampal and behavioral excitability by cyclin-dependent kinase 5PLoS One.  4. 2009
    2009 Pharmacological inhibition of mTORCl suppresses anatomical, cellular, and behavioral abnormalities in neural-specific PTEN knock-out mice 2009
    2009 Increased anxiety-like behavior in mice lacking the inhibitory synapse cell adhesion molecule neuroligin 2Genes, Brain and Behavior.  8:114-126. 2009
    2008 RIM1α phosphorylation at serine-413 by protein kinase A is not required for presynaptic long-term plasticity or learning 2008
    2008 Systemic inhibition of mammalian target of rapamycin inhibits fear memory reconsolidationNeurobiology of Learning and Memory.  90:28-35. 2008
    2008 Motor coordination deficits in mice lacking RGS9Brain Research.  1190:78-85. 2008
    2007 A neuroligin-3 mutation implicated in autism increases inhibitory synaptic transmission in miceScience.  318:71-76. 2007
    2007 Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 governs learning and synaptic plasticity via control of NMDAR degradationNature Neuroscience.  10:880-886. 2007
    2007 Learning-induced glutamate receptor phosphorylation resembles that induced by long term potentiationJournal of Biological Chemistry.  282:18100-18107. 2007
    2006 Postreactivation glucocorticoids impair recall of established fear memory 2006
    2006 Schizophrenia-Relevant Behavioral Testing in Rodent Models: A Uniquely Human Disorder?Biological Psychiatry.  59:1198-1207. 2006
    2006 Pten Regulates Neuronal Arborization and Social Interaction in MiceNeuron.  50:377-388. 2006
    2006 Gene targeting of presynaptic proteins in synaptic plasticity and memory: Across the great divideNeurobiology of Learning and Memory.  85:2-15. 2006
    2004 Essential role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor in adult hippocampal function 2004
    2004 Multilevel Intramedullary Spinal Neurocysticercosis with Eosinophilic MeningitisJAMA Neurology.  61:770-772. 2004
    2004 The presynaptic active zone protein RIM1α is critical for normal learning and memoryNeuron.  42:143-153. 2004
    1994 Autonomously active protein kinase C in the maintenance phase of N- methyl-D-aspartate receptor-independent long term potentiationJournal of Biological Chemistry.  269:27958-27963. 1994
    1993 Studies with Synthetic Peptide Substrates Derived from the Neuronal Protein Neurogranin Reveal Structural Determinants of Potency and Selectivity for Protein Kinase CBiochemistry.  32:1032-1039. 1993
    1992 Ca2+-induced persistent protein kinase C activation in rat hippocampal homogenatesJournal of Receptors and Signal Transduction.  14:109-126. 1992


    Year Title Altmetric
    2012 The Autisms Molecules to Model Systems 2012


    Year Title Altmetric
    2010 Neuroligins and neurexins: Synaptic bridges implicated in autism.  201-215. 2010
    2009 Rab3A Interacting Molecules (RIMs).  7-14. 2009
    2007 Presynaptic mechanisms in plasticity and memory.  741-769. 2007

    Education And Training

  • Doctor of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine 1997
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine 1994
  • Bachelor of Science or Mathematics in Zoology / Animal Biology, Louisiana State University System : Baton Rouge 1988
  • Full Name

  • Craig Powell