MapLight Therapeutics Appoints Hongkui Zeng, Ph.D. to Scientific Advisory Board

Dr. Zeng Brings Deep Expertise in Single-Cell Transcriptomics and Brian Circuit Connectivity to MapLight’s Scientific Advisory Board 

SAN FRANCISCO and BOSTON, April 18, 2023 – MapLight Therapeutics today announced the appointment of Hongkui Zeng, Ph.D. to the company’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). Dr. Zeng joins MapLight Founders Karl Deisseroth, M.D., Ph.D. and Robert Malenka, M.D., Ph.D. on the SAB, further expanding the Board’s expertise and experience in brain science research.


As Executive Vice President and Director of the independent nonprofit Allen Institute for Brain Science, Dr. Zeng is committed to unlocking the mysteries of human biology through foundational science. A member of the Allen Institute since 2006, Dr. Zeng has spearheaded several key initiatives, including the Allen Mouse Brain Connectivity Atlas, Mouse Cell Types and Connectivity Program, and most recently a comprehensive whole-brain atlas of cell types in the mouse. 


“We are incredibly excited to have Dr. Zeng join the MapLight Scientific Advisory Board,” said Christopher Kroeger, M.D., MBA, MapLight’s Chief Executive Officer and Founder. “She is a world leader in developing methods for identifying and classifying distinct cell types across the brain. Her expertise in single-cell transcriptomics and brain circuit connectivity will support MapLight’s development of circuit-specific neurotherapeutics.”


Dr. Zeng received her Ph.D. in molecular and cell biology from Brandeis University and then was a postdoctoral fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she studied the molecular and synaptic mechanisms underlying hippocampus-dependent plasticity and learning. 


“My passion is in using a combined molecular, anatomical and physiological approach to unravel mechanisms of brain circuitry and potential means for treating brain disease,” explained Dr. Zeng. “I’m thrilled to work with MapLight, given our shared vision of redefining the standard of care for brain disorders.”

About MapLight Therapeutics

MapLight Therapeutics is developing targeted, highly effective therapeutics to improve the lives of those with difficult-to-treat brain disorders. Today, there are few therapeutic options for people living with conditions such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, Parkinson’s Disease, and Schizophrenia, and those therapies are limited by modest efficacy and significant side effects. MapLight is committed to redefining this standard of care. The company’s unique discovery platform combines novel, proprietary technologies to uncover the individual circuits that misfire in brain disorders and treat those circuits with effective, safe therapeutics. MapLight was founded in 2019 by a team of renowned neuroscientists who led the discovery of such groundbreaking technologies as optogenetics and STARmap. Learn more at                                                                                            



Media Contact for MapLight Therapeutics
Lauren Davis, Alkali Marketing, 512-751-2946