Dan Gibbs, PhD

Daniel Gibbs, PhD

Assistant Professor
Department of Neurosciences

Contact Information

Email: dgibbs@ucsd.edu
Phone: 858.822.0051

Mailing Address:
UCSD School of Medicine
Department of Neurosciences
9500 Gilman Drive MC 0626
La Jolla, CA 92093

Lab Website



Tools and Methods for Targeted Analysis of Neural Circuits:
Understanding how neural circuits transform environmental changes into complex behavior is a fundamental challenge in neurobiology and requires the ability to: 1. Target specific neurons within a neural circuit. 2. Visualize circuit anatomy and connectivity with high resolution across multiple scales in space and time. 3. Perturb the activity and probe molecular identity of specific participating neurons in order to record changes in activity patterns and analyze behavioral outputs. To address this challenge, my lab has developed an integrated viral vector toolbox termed VISTA - C (Viral Intersectional System for Targeted Analysis of Circuits) that allows the precise targeting of specific neurons based on their genetic identity and projection patterns. We are using these tools to interrogate the functional connectivity, activity, structure and transcriptional state of specific neural circuits involved in primary visual processing and skilled motor learning across multiple scales, from sub-cellular to systems level analyses.

Gene and Cell Therapy Approaches to Neural Repair:
Following traumatic injury or in neurodegenerative disease, neurons of the central nervous system fail to activate robust regenerative and neuroprotective growth mechanisms; leading to axon retraction, de-innervation of synaptic partners and neuronal cell death. As part of the Center for Neural Repair and the UCSD Translational Neurosciences Institute, my lab utilizes novel viral vector mediated gene therapy approaches in combination with neural stem cell grafts to activate and enhance the intrinsic growth state of injured CNS neurons, Viral vectors are also used to modulate the extracellular environment and provide drug inducible neurotrophic support to promote axonal regeneration and functional recovery in spinal cord injury, optic nerve injury and Alzheimer's Disease.

Kusne Y, Carrera-Silva EA, Perry AS, Rushing EJ, Mandell EK, Dietrich JD,Errasti AE, Gibbs D, Berens ME, Loftus JC, Hulme C, Yang W, Lu Z, Aldape K, Sanai N, Rothlin CV, Ghosh S. Targeting aPKC disables oncogenic signaling by both the EGFR and the proinflammatory cytokine TNFα in glioblastoma. Sci Signal. 2014 Aug 12;7(338):ra75. doi: 10.1126/scisignal.2005196. PubMed PMID: 25118327.

Reuter JD, Fang X, Ly CS, Suter KK, Gibbs D. Assessment of hazard risk associated with the intravenous use of viral vectors in rodents. Comp Med. 2012 Oct;62(5):361-70. PubMed PMID: 23114039; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3472600. Lopes VS, Gibbs D, Libby RT, Aleman TS, Welch DL, Lillo C, Jacobson SG, Radu RA, Steel KP, Williams DS. The Usher 1B protein, MYO7A, is required for normal localization and function of the visual retinoid cycle enzyme, RPE65. Hum Mol Genet. 2011 Jul 1;20(13):2560-70. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddr155. Epub 2011 Apr 14. PubMed PMID: 21493626; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3110002.

Schwander M, Lopes V, Sczaniecka A, Gibbs D, Lillo C, Delano D, Tarantino LM, Wiltshire T, Williams DS, Müller U. A novel allele of myosin VIIa reveals a critical function for the C-terminal FERM domain for melanosome transport in retinal pigment epithelial cells. J Neurosci. 2009 Dec 16;29(50):15810-8. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4876-09.2009. PubMed PMID: 20016096; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2834289.

Gibbs D, Diemer T, Khanobdee K, Hu J, Bok D, Williams DS. Function of MYO7A in the human RPE and the validity of shaker1 mice as a model for Usher syndrome 1B. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2010 Feb;51(2):1130-5. doi: 10.1167/iovs.09-4032. Epub 2009 Jul 30. PubMed PMID: 19643958; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2868451.

Gibbs D, Cideciyan AV, Jacobson SG, Williams DS. Retinal pigment epithelium defects in humans and mice with mutations in MYO7A: imaging melanosome-specific autofluorescence. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2009 Sep;50(9):4386-93. doi: 10.1167/iovs.09-3471. Epub 2009 Mar 25. PubMed PMID: 19324852; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2884175.

Allocca M, Doria M, Petrillo M, Colella P, Garcia-Hoyos M, Gibbs D, Kim SR, Maguire A, Rex TS, Di Vicino U, Cutillo L, Sparrow JR, Williams DS, Bennett J, Auricchio A. Serotype-dependent packaging of large genes in adeno-associated viral vectors results in effective gene delivery in mice. J Clin Invest. 2008 May;118(5):1955-64. doi: 10.1172/JCI34316. PubMed PMID: 18414684; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2298836.

Diemer T, Gibbs D, Williams DS. Analysis of the rate of disk membrane digestion by cultured RPE cells. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2008;613:321-6. doi: 10.1007/978-0-387-74904-4_37. PubMed PMID: 18188960.

Hashimoto T, Gibbs D, Lillo C, Azarian SM, Legacki E, Zhang XM, Yang XJ, Williams DS. Lentiviral gene replacement therapy of retinas in a mouse model for Usher syndrome type 1B. Gene Ther. 2007 Apr;14(7):584-94. Epub 2007 Feb 1. PubMed PMID: 17268537.

Azarian SM, McLeod I, Lillo C, Gibbs D, Yates JR, Williams DS. Proteomic analysis of mature melanosomes from the retinal pigmented epithelium. J Proteome Res. 2006 Mar;5(3):521-9. PubMed PMID: 16512666.

Kitamoto J, Libby RT, Gibbs D, Steel KP, Williams DS. Myosin VI is required for normal retinal function. Exp Eye Res. 2005 Jul;81(1):116-20. PubMed PMID: 15978262.

Gibbs D, Azarian SM, Lillo C, Kitamoto J, Klomp AE, Steel KP, Libby RT, Williams DS. Role of myosin VIIa and Rab27a in the motility and localization of RPE melanosomes. J Cell Sci. 2004 Dec 15;117(Pt 26):6473-83. Epub 2004 Nov 30. PubMed PMID: 15572405; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2942070.

Gibbs D, Williams DS. Isolation and culture of primary mouse retinal pigmented epithelial cells. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2003;533:347-52. Review. PubMed PMID: 15180284.

Gibbs D, Kitamoto J, Williams DS. Abnormal phagocytosis by retinal pigmented epithelium that lacks myosin VIIa, the Usher syndrome 1B protein. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 May 27;100(11):6481-6. Epub 2003 May 12. PubMed PMID: 12743369; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC164472.

Udovichenko IP, Gibbs D, Williams DS. Actin-based motor properties of native myosin VIIa. J Cell Sci. 2002 Jan 15;115(Pt 2):445-50. PubMed PMID: 11839794.

Liovic M, Stojan J, Bowden PE, Gibbs D, Vahlquist A, Lane EB, Komel R. A novel keratin 5 mutation (K5V186L) in a family with EBS-K: a conservative substitution can lead to development of different disease phenotypes. J Invest Dermatol. 2001 Jun;116(6):964-9. PubMed PMID: 11407988.