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Xuansong Mao, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Associate
  • Yan Lab

Xuansong Mao is a former sprinter from China. His athletic background inspired him to delve into the health benefits of exercise. He received his Ph.D. degree under the guidance of Dr. Frank Booth at University of Missouri-Columbia in 2022. During his doctoral studies, he explored how exercise and nutritional supplementation can enhance the learning and memory system under the condition where neuroinflammation negatively affects cognition. In the Yan Lab, Xuansong continues to pursue the impacts of exercise training on central nervous system. His research focuses on the impact of exercise training on mitochondrial structural and functional remodeling process in hippocampal neurons in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease and aging. Xuansong utilizes a combination of imaging (e.g., transmission electron microscope and confocal microscope), molecular genetics and neurocognitive analyses to investigate the superb benefits of exercise. He will also use Oroboros 2k respirometry system to assess mitochondrial bioenergetics in hippocampus under both exercise training and diseases conditions. His research will yield fundamental insights into the physiological, cellular, and molecular adaptations to exercise training in the central nervous system.

  • University of Missouri-Columbia, Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences
  • Auburn University, M.S., Exercise Physiology
  • Soochow University, Suzhou, China, B.S., Exercise Sciences

Kerr NR, Kelty TJ, Mao X, Childs TE, Kline DD, Rector RS, Booth FW (2023). Selective breeding for physical inactivity produces cognitive deficits via altered hippocampal mitochondrial and synaptic function. Front Aging Neurosci, 15:1147420

Mao X, Grigsby KB, Kelty TJ, Kerr NR, Childs TE, Booth FW (2023). Transcriptomic analysis reveals novel molecular signaling networks involved in low voluntary running behavior after AP-1 inhibition. Neuroscience, 509:173-186

Kelty TJ, Mao X, Kerr NR, Childs TE, Ruegsegger GN, Booth FW (2022). Resistance-exercise training attenuates LPS-induced astrocyte remodeling and neuroinflammatory cytokine expression in female Wistar rats. J Appl Physiol,132(2):317-326

Mao X, Kelty TJ, Kerr NR, Childs TE, Roberts MD, Booth FW (2021). Creatine Supplementation Upregulates mTORC1 Signaling and Markers of Synaptic Plasticity in the Dentate Gyrus While Ameliorating LPS-Induced Cognitive Impairment in Female Rats. Nutrients, 13(8):2758

Kelty TJ, Schachtman TR, Mao X, Grigsby KB, Childs TE, Olver TD, Michener PN, Richardson RA, Roberts CK, Booth FW (2019). Resistance-exercise training ameliorates LPS-induced cognitive impairment concurrent with molecular signaling changes in the rat dentate gyrus. J Appl Physiol, 127(1):254-263

  • Postdoctoral Associate, Yan Lab, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC, 2022-present    
  • Postdoctoral Associate, Yan Lab, University of Virginia, 2022
  • Graduate Research Assistant to Dr. Frank W. Booth, University of Missouri, 2017-2022        
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant to Dr. M. Cathleen Kovarik, University of Missouri, 2018-2020