Alexander Vasin

Alexander Vasin

Alexander Vasin

Office Address

103 Lande
550 E. Canfield
Detroit, MI 48201

Narrative Bio

Dr. Alexander Vasin is an Assistant Professor (Research) of the Department of Neurology at Wayne State University School of Medicine. Dr. Vasin specialized in electrophysiology, genetics and live confocal imaging, and these experimental approaches are combined with Drosophila and mouse models to study presynaptic mechanisms and plasticity. The research in the lab has been supported by the National Institute of health. Also Dr. Vasin, in collaboration with Dr. Jun Li, recently started a project investigating how inherited peripheral nerve diseases change properties of neuromuscular junctions.

Links of Interest

Research Summary:
Dr Vasin’s research has two wings. First wing is focused on molecular machinery that controls the release of neuronal transmitters and activity dependent outgrowth. We study the mobilization, docking and fusion of synaptic vesicles. This process is highly plastic, and disruptions might be associated with multiple neurological disorders. Due to persistent stimulation, short-term changes in synaptic activity lead to morphological modifications of synaptic ultrastructure, this phenomenon is thought to underlie the processes of learning and memory. We use Drosophila neuromuscular junctions, model well known to be used for in vivo and in vitro studies to monitor neuronal sprouting and outgrowth. The mentioned model system is ideal for creating genetically modified animals.
Second wing is focused on research of neuromuscular physiology in mice with inherited peripheral nerve diseases. We investigate how genetic mutations in various types of inherited peripheral neuropathies - also known as Charcot-Marie-Tooth diseases (CMT) - alter the synaptic transmission. We hope that findings will go beyond mouse and help treat patients.

Academic Rank

Assistant Professor Department of Neurology  (Research)

Awards & Honors

2008: 1st prize winner, Russian National Conference “Junior Scientists in Biomedical Sciences” Kazan, Russia.


Kazan State University, M.S. 2007


Kazan Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Ph.D. 2010


Universidad Central del Caribe, Post Doc, 2010-2012


 Electrophysiology, molecular biology, imaging, inherited peripheral nerve diseases


1. Vasin A., Bykhovskaia M. (2017) Focal Macropatch Recordings of Synaptic Currents from the Drosophila Larval Neuromuscular Junction. J Vis Exp. 25;(127) DOI: 10.3791/56493.
2. Bykhovskaia M., Vasin A. (2017) Electrophysiological analysis of synaptic transmission in Drosophila. Wiley Interdiscip Rev Dev Biol . Doi: 10.1002/wdev.277
3. Sabeva N., Cho. R., Vasin, A. Gonzalez, J.T. Littleton, and M. Bykhovskaia. (2016) Complexin Mutants Reveal Partial Segregation Between Recycling Pathways that Drive Evoked and Spontaneous Neurotransmission J Neurosci DOI:
4. Vasin, A., Volfson, D., Littleton, J. T., and Bykhovskaia, M. (2016) Interaction of the Complexin Accessory Helix with Synaptobrevin Regulates Spontaneous Fusion, Biophys J 111, 1954-1964.
5. Vasin A., Zueva L., Torrez C., Volfson D., Littleton J.T., Bykhovskaia M. (2014). Synapsin regulates activity-dependent outgrowth of synaptic boutons at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction. J Neurosci. 2014 34(32):10554-63.
6. Bykhovskaia M., A. Jagots, A. Gonzalez A., A. Vasin and J.T. Littleton. (2013). Interaction of the complexin accessory helix with the C-terminus of the SNARE complex: Molecular dynamics model of the fusion clamp. Biophys J 105(3):679-90.
7. Vasin, A.L., Samigullin, D.V., Bukharaeva, E.A. (2010) Role of calcium in modulation of kinetics of synchronous and asynchronous release of mediator quanta in neuro-muscular synapse. Biochemistry Supplement Series A: Membrane and Cell Biology; 4(1): 77-84.
8. Samigullin, D.V., Vasin, A.L., Bukharaeva, E.A., Nikolsky, E.E. (2010) Characteristics of calcium transient in different parts of frog nerve terminal in response to nerve impulse. Dokl Biol Sci.;431:83-5.
9. Bukharaeva, E.A., Tsentsevitsky, A.N., Vasin, A.L., Samigullin, D.V., Nikolsky, E.E. (2009) Presynaptic voltage-dependent calcium channels and regulation of the transmitter release in the peripheral nervous system. Biochemistry Supplement Series A: Membrane and Cell Biology; 3(3): 303.
10. Tsentsevitsky, A.N., Vasin, A.L., Bukharaeva, E.A., Nikolsky E.E. (2008) Participation of different types of voltage-dependent calcium channels in evoked quantal transmitter release in frog neuromuscular junctions. Dokl Biol Sci.423:389-91.

← Return to listing