Jeansok Kim

Image of Jeansok Kim

Jeansok Kim, Ph.D.

(206) 616-2685
Guthrie 321
Advising: Possibly accepting new graduate students in 2024-2025, please email with questions.
Interests: Neurobiology of Fear, Stress, and Aging Brain


Stress and fear play important roles in our lives, from influencing daily behaviors to precipitating symptoms of mental health disorders. My laboratory is performing multi-level analyses toward understanding the neurobiology of stress and fear. Specifically, we investigate how stress alters hippocampal plasticity and multiple brain-memory systems, and how fear memories are formed. These investigations consist of employing lesion, intra-cerebral drug infusion, and in vitro and in vivo neurophysiological recording techniques. Recently, we began employing 'predator-like' robots and 'closed economy' (self-contained living setting comprised of safe nest and dangerous foraging zones) to investigate defensive behaviors of rats in semi-naturalistic, dynamic risky environments. These ecologically-relevant studies address the neuronal basis of the basic approach-avoid conflicts that contribute to human psychopathologies.


University of California, Los Angeles (1991)

  • Kim EJ & Kim JJ (2023) Neurocognitive effects of stress: a metaparadigm perspective. Molecular Psychiatry
  • Zambetti PR, Schuessler BP, Lecamp BE, Shin A, Kim EJ & Kim JJ (2022) Ecological analysis of Pavlovian fear conditioning in rats. Communications Biology 5:DOI 10.1038/s42003-022-03802-1.
  • Kong M-S, Kim EJ, Park S, Zweifel LS, Huh Y, Cho J & Kim JJ (2021) 'Fearful-place' coding in the amygdala-hippocampal network. eLife 10:e72040.
  • Kim EJ, Kong M-S, Park SG, Mizumori SJY, Cho J & Kim JJ (2018) Dynamic coding of predatory information between the prelimbic cortex and lateral amygdala in foraging rats. Science Advances 4:eaar7328.
  • Kim EJ, Park M, Kong M-S, Park SG, Cho J & Kim JJ (2015) Alterations of hippocampal place cells in foraging rats facing a 'predatory' threat. Current Biology 25: 1-6.
  • Kim E, Kim EJ, Yeh R, Shin M, Bobman J, Krasne FB & Kim JJ (2014) Amygdaloid and non-amygdaloid fear both influence avoidance of risky foraging in hungry rats. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 281: 20133357.
  • Kim EJ, Horovitz O, Pellman BA, Tan LM, Li Q, Richter-Levin G & Kim JJ (2013) Dorsal periaqueductal gray-amygdala pathway conveys both innate and learned fear responses in rats. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110: 14795-14800.
  • Kim EJ, Kim E, Park M, Cho J & Kim JJ (2012) Amygdalar stimulation produces alterations on firing properties of hippocampal place cells. Journal of Neuroscience 32: 11424-11434.
  • Choi J-S & Kim JJ (2010) Amygdala regulates risk of predation in rats foraging in a dynamic fear environment. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107: 21773-21777.