Our research focusses on the development, plasticity, and function of long-range connections of the cerebral cortex. The corpus callosum is the largest fibre tract in the brain of placental mammals and connects neurons in each cortical hemisphere. We investigate how cellular and molecular/genetic mechanisms regulate brain wiring during development and how brain wiring is altered in congenital corpus callosum dysgenesis (CCD).

CCD occurs in 1:4000 people and can result in profound changes in the structural architecture of brain connectivity due to long-range axonal plasticity that occurs during development. Our research investigates the underlying causes of CCD, how long-range axonal plasticity occurs and how these structural changes in brain wiring impact cognition and behaviour.

Professor Richards is a board member of the International Research Consortium for the Corpus Callosum and Cerebral Connectivity (IRC5) and a scientific advisor and patron of Australian Disorders of the Corpus Callosum (AusDoCC) support group.

In addition to her research, Professor Richards is a passionate advocate for neuroscience. She contributed to establishing the International Brain Initiative, the Australian Brain Alliance and the Australian Brain Bee Challenge and is a board member of the International Brain Bee and a member of the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives.

Selected Publications

Publications in Neuroscience Advocacy

For a complete list of Dr. Richards' publications, click here.

Linda J. Richards AO, FAA, FAHMS, PhD

Edison Professor of Neurobiology
Department of Neuroscience
Director McDonnell Center for Cellular & Molecular Neurobiology

Washington University
School of Medicine
Campus Box 8108
St. Louis, MO 63110
(314) 362-3033


McDonnell Center for Cellular & Molecular Neurobiology

Other Information

1991-1994 Doctorate of Philosophy, The University of Melbourne

1990 Bachelor of Science Degree (Honours), The University of Melbourne

Selected Honors
2020 Cajal Club 2020 Krieg Cortical Kudos Discoverer Award

2020 Cajal Club Pinckney J Harman Memorial Lecture

2019 Appointed an Officer (AO) of the Order of Australia (General Division) "For distinguished service to medical research and education in the field of developmental neurobiology, and to science and community engagement in science."

2016 Elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences

2015 Elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science

2017-2018 President, Australasian Neuroscience Society

2010 Australasian Neuroscience Society - Nina Kondelos Prize for a female neuroscientist who has made an outstanding contribution to basic or clinical neuroscience research

2004 Charles Judson Herrick Award, conferred by the American Association of Anatomists in recognition of "young investigators who have made important contributions to the field and have demonstrated remarkable promise of future accomplishments"