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Nicolas Tritsch

Nicolas Tritsch, PhD

Neuroscience Institute

Assistant Professor, Department of Neuroscience and Physiology

molecular, cellular & translational neuroscience, synaptic physiology, channels and transporters

My laboratory studies synaptic mechanisms underlying the control of movement. Our goal is to reveal how the nervous system generates movement and how disorders of movement control—such as Parkinson’s disease—corrupt this process.

I am particularly interested in understanding how a collection of brain nuclei known as the basal ganglia (BG) participates in the selection, execution, and reinforcement of voluntary movement at the level of synapses, cells, and circuits. The BG have been extensively implicated in the control of movement both clinically and experimentally, but the precise neural mechanisms by which goal-directed movement is enabled and learned remain poorly understood.

Our current studies focus on how dopamine-releasing neurons, which play a critical role in the function and plasticity of motor circuits, modulate the activity of target neurons within the BG. We have shown that synaptic transmission from dopaminergic neurons is more complex than previously thought, extending beyond the sole release of dopamine.

Specifically, we found that dopaminergic neurons silence striatal projection neurons by co-releasing the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, and that they modulate the activity of striatal cholinergic interneurons by co-releasing dopamine and another neurotransmitter.

We apply a variety of experimental approaches, including whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology in brain slices and calcium imaging in awake behaving mice. We leverage molecular, genetic, optogenetic, and pharmacogenetic tools to precisely identify neural elements and establish their functional necessity and sufficiency. Our research efforts aim to unravel the interplay among and net contribution of novel signaling pathways to BG function under physiological as well as pathological conditions.

In addition to the Neuroscience Institute at NYU Langone, I am affiliated with the Marlene and Paolo Fresco Institute for Parkinson’s and Movement Disorders.





Academic office

Science Building, 435 East 30th Street

13th Floor, Room 1306

New York, NY 10016

Lab Website
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PhD from Johns Hopkins University

Krok, Anne C; Maltese, Marta; Mistry, Pratik; Miao, Xiaolei; Li, Yulong; Tritsch, Nicolas X

Nature. 2023 Sep; 621(7979):543-549

Sippy, Tanya; Tritsch, Nicolas X

Trends in neurosciences. 2023 Mar; 46(3):228-239

Liu, Haixin; Tritsch, Nicolas X

Journal of physiology. 2022 Nov; 600(22):4773-4774

Melani, Riccardo; Tritsch, Nicolas X

Cell reports. 2022 04 19; 39(3):110716

Maltese, Marta; March, Jeffrey R; Bashaw, Alexander G; Tritsch, Nicolas X

eLife. 2021 May 13; 10:

Melani, Riccardo; Tritsch, Nicolas X

Nature metabolism. 2021 Mar; 3(3):293-294

Yamaguchi, Takashi; Wei, Dongyu; Song, Soomin C; Lim, Byungkook; Tritsch, Nicolas X; Lin, Dayu

Nature neuroscience. 2020 Sep; 23(9):1111-1124

Fang, Yi-Ya; Yamaguchi, Takashi; Song, Soomin C; Tritsch, Nicolas X; Lin, Dayu

Neuron. 2018 Apr 04; 98(1):192-207.e10