Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology

Jahanshah Amin, Ph.D. I-7174-2012

Jahanshah Amin, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, College of Medicine

Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, College of Medicine

Post Doctoral Training, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Medicine

Post Doctoral Training, Department of Physiology and Biophysics, College of Medicine

Post Doctoral Training, Division of Endocrinology, School of Medicine

Contact Info 12901 Bruce B. Downs Blvd.
Tampa FL 33612

Academic Email:

Academic Phone:(813) 974-4577

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  • PHD, Biochemistry/Molecular Biology, Univ of Miami, 1990
  • B.S., Biochemistry. Minor: Math, Chemistry, University of Miami, 1983

Interdisciplinary and Emerging Signature Programs

  • Neuroscience

Research Interests

  • The cerebellum has a primary function in motor control and learning, and may also participate in higher cognitive functions. There are two sets of inputs to the cerebellum: the climbing fibers and the mossy fibers. Information transmitted from mossy fibers to granule cells is modulated and recoded into action potentials. An important step in this recoding phenomenon is tuning the granule neuron excitability, which is set by the tonic activity of <I>alpha</I>6<I>beta</I>2/3<I>delta</I> GABAa receptor subtypes. This signal is then synaptically transmitted to Purkinje cells for output from the cerebellum. Cerebellar granule cells are the most abundant neurons in the CNS and are central to the control of information flow through the cerebellar cortex, where they may play a fundamental role in motor learning activity. The first aim of the laboratory is to elucidate the role of <I>alpha</I>6<I>beta</I>2/3<I>delta</I> GABAa receptor in the tuning the signal transmission through cerebellum and how this might contribute to motor learning activity.
  • <P>The second goal of the laboratory is to find how structurally diverse drugs, known as general anesthetics, modulate the function of ligand-gated ion channels such as GABAa receptors.</P>

Recent Publications

  • Amin J, Subbarayan MS. Orthosteric- versus allosteric-dependent activation of the GABAA receptor requires numerically distinct subunit level rearrangements. Scientific reports. 7(1) : 7770, 2017.
  • Yip KP, Cha BJ, Tse CM, Amin ME, & Amin J. Functional Expression of Aquaporin-2 Tagged with Photoconvertible Fluorescent Protein in mpkCCD Cells. Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry: International Journal of Experimental Cellular Physiology, Biochemistry, and Pharmacology. 36(2) : 670-82, 2015.
  • Lima A, Cha BJ, Amin J, Smith LK, & Anderson B. Zebrafish embryo model of Bartonella henselae infection. Zebrafish. 11(5) : 434-46, 2014.
  • Hevers W, Hadley SH, L├╝ddens H & Amin J. Ketamine but not PCP selectively modulates cerebellar GABAA receptors containing a6 and d subunits Journal of Neuroscience. 28(20) : 5383-5393, 2008.
  • Hadley SH & Amin J. Rat alpha6beta2delta GABAA receptors exhibit two distinct and separable agonist affinities. The Journal of Physiology. 581(3) : 1001-18, 2007.
  • Severance EG, Zhang H, Cruz Y, Pakhlevaniants S, Hadley SH, Amin J, Wecker L, Reed C, & Cuevas J. The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit exists in two isoforms that contribute to functional ligand-gated ion channels. Molecular Pharmacology. 66(3) : 420-9, 2004.
  • Morris KD & Amin J. Insight into the mechanism of action of neuroactive steroids. Molecular Pharmacology. 66(1) : 56-69, 2004.
  • Walters RJ, Hadley SH, Morris KD, Amin J. Benzodiazepines act on GABAA receptors via two distinct and separable mechanisms. Nature neuroscience. 3(12) : 1274-81, 2000.
  • Morris KD, Moorefield CN, Amin J. Differential modulation of the gamma-aminobutyric acid type C receptor by neuroactive steroids. Molecular pharmacology. 56(4) : 752-9, 1999.
  • Amin J. A single hydrophobic residue confers barbiturate sensitivity to gamma-aminobutyric acid type C receptor. Molecular pharmacology. 55(3) : 411-23, 1999.
  • Amin J, Brooks-Kayal A, Weiss DS. Two tyrosine residues on the alpha subunit are crucial for benzodiazepine binding and allosteric modulation of gamma-aminobutyric acidA receptors. Molecular pharmacology. 51(5) : 833-41, 1997.
  • Amin J, Weiss DS. Insights into the activation mechanism of rho1 GABA receptors obtained by coexpression of wild type and activation-impaired subunits. Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society. 263(1368) : 273-82, 1996.
  • Hsu YN, Amin J, Weiss DS, Wecker L. Sustained nicotine exposure differentially affects alpha 3 beta 2 and alpha 4 beta 2 neuronal nicotinic receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Journal of neurochemistry. 66(2) : 667-75, 1996.
  • Chang Y, Amin J, Weiss DS. Zinc is a mixed antagonist of homomeric rho 1 gamma-aminobutyric acid-activated channels. Molecular pharmacology. 47(3) : 595-602, 1995.
  • de Forteza R, Smith CU, Amin J, McKenzie JM, Zakarija M. Visualization of the thyrotropin receptor on the cell surface by potent autoantibodies. The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism. 78(5) : 1271-3, 1994.
  • Amin J, Dickerson IM, Weiss DS. The agonist binding site of the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A channel is not formed by the extracellular cysteine loop. Molecular pharmacology. 45(2) : 317-23, 1994.
  • Amin J, Fernandez M, Ananthan J, Lis JT, Voellmy R. Cooperative binding of heat shock transcription factor to the Hsp70 promoter in vivo and in vitro. The Journal of biological chemistry. 269(7) : 4804-11, 1994.
  • Amin J, Weiss DS. Homomeric rho 1 GABA channels: activation properties and domains. Receptors & channels. 2(3) : 227-36, 1994.
  • Amin J, Weiss DS. GABAA receptor needs two homologous domains of the beta-subunit for activation by GABA but not by pentobarbital. Nature. 366(6455) : 565-9, 1993.
  • Amin J, Mestril R, Voellmy R. Genes for Drosophila small heat shock proteins are regulated differently by ecdysterone. Molecular and cellular biology. 11(12) : 5937-44, 1991.
  • Luo Y, Amin J, Voellmy R. Ecdysterone receptor is a sequence-specific transcription factor involved in the developmental regulation of heat shock genes. Molecular and cellular biology. 11(7) : 3660-75, 1991.
  • Bai G, Zhang ZJ, Amin J, Deans-Zirattu SA, Lee EY. Molecular cloning of a cDNA for the catalytic subunit of rabbit muscle phosphorylase phosphatase. The FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. 2(14) : 3010-6, 1988.
  • Schiller P, Amin J, Ananthan J, Brown ME, Scott WA, Voellmy R. Cis-acting elements involved in the regulated expression of a human HSP70 gene. Journal of molecular biology. 203(1) : 97-105, 1988.
  • Brown ME, Amin J, Schiller P, Voellmy R, Scott WA. Determinants for the DNase I-hypersensitive chromatin structure 5'' to a human HSP70 gene. Journal of molecular biology. 203(1) : 107-17, 1988.
  • Amin J, Ananthan J, Voellmy R. Key features of heat shock regulatory elements. Molecular and cellular biology. 8(9) : 3761-9, 1988.

Positions Held

  • Assistant Professor (Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, College of Medicine, University of South Florida 1995 - 2001)
  • Post Doctoral Training (Department of Physiology and Biophysics, College of Medicine, University of South Florida 1992 - 1995)
  • Post Doctoral Training (Division of Endocrinology, School of Medicine, University of Miami 1990 - 1992)
  • Post Doctoral Training (Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Medicine, University of Miami 1989 - 1990)


  • Sophomore Class Outstanding Instructor Award (College of Medicine, University of South Florida - 2006)
  • Fellowship awardfor Postdoctoral research (NIH - 1991)
  • Elected Member (American Institute of Chemists - 1983)