Research Abstract

Awake animals normally maintain a particular orientation with respect to gravity. This feature of behavior is so fundamental that it's ingrained in our language: we refer to a failed business as going “belly up.” Posture is intimately dependent on signals from the inner ear, but we understand very little about how that information is mapped onto motor outputs. Our lab studies how sensory information about orientation and movement drives appropriate body movements to adjust posture... read more

Selected Publications

  • Liu Z, Kimura Y, Higashijima SI, Hildebrand DGC, Morgan JL, Bagnall MW. Central Vestibular Tuning Arises from Patterned Convergence of Otolith Afferents. Neuron. 2020 Nov 25;108(4):748-762.e4.
  • Callahan RA, Roberts R, Sengupta M, Kimura Y, Higashijima SI, Bagnall MW. Spinal V2b neurons reveal a role for ipsilateral inhibition in speed controlElife. 2019 Jul 29;8:e47837.
  • Roberts R, Elsner J, Bagnall MWDelayed Otolith Development Does Not Impair Vestibular Circuit Formation in ZebrafishJ Assoc Res Otolaryngol. 2017 Jun;18(3):415-425.
  • Bagnall MW, McLean DL (2014). Modular organization of axial microcircuits in zebrafish. Science. 343(6167):197-200.
  • Bagnall MW, Hull C, Bushong EA, Ellisman MH, Scanziani M (2011). Multiple clusters of release sites formed by individual thalamic afferents onto cortical interneurons ensure reliable transmission. Neuron. 71(1):180-94.
  • McElvain LE, Bagnall MW, Sakatos A, du Lac S (2010). Bidirectional plasticity gated by hyperpolarization controls the gain of postsynaptic firing responses at central vestibular nerve synapses. Neuron. 68(4):763-75.
  • Bagnall MW, Zingg B, Sakatos A, Moghadam SH, Zeilhofer HU, du Lac S (2009). Glycinergic projection neurons of the cerebellum. J Neurosci. 29(32):10104-10.
  • Bagnall MW, McElvain LE, Faulstich M, du Lac S (2008). Frequency-independent synaptic transmission supports a linear vestibular behavior. Neuron. 60(2): 343-52.
  • Bagnall MW, Stevens RJ, du Lac S (2007). Transgenic mouse lines subdivide medial vestibular nucleus neurons into discrete, neurochemically distinct populations. J Neurosci. 27(9): 2318-30.

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

Martha Bagnall, PhD

Assistant Professor of Neuroscience

Washington University
School of Medicine
Campus Box 8108
McDonnell Medical Sciences, 480
St. Louis, MO 63110
(314) 362-9695


Bagnall Lab

Other Information

2002-2008 PhD, Neuroscience, University of California, San Diego

1996-2000 BS, Biology, Yale University, New Haven, CT

Selected Honors
2017 McKnight Scholar Award

2016 Pew Scholar

2016 Sloan Award

2012 K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, NIH

2004-2007 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship