Christos Lisgaras, Ph.D.

Christos Lisgaras, Ph.D.

Research Scientist
Center for Dementia Research

Dr. Christos Lisgaras received his Integrated Master’s Degree in Applied Biology and Technology from the University of Ioannina in Greece and his Ph.D. in Neurophysiology and Neuropharmacology from the same institution. His Ph.D. work focused on the role of the cholinergic system in the hyperexcitability of developmental epilepsies with a particular focus on hippocampal and cortical oscillations. He was subsequently trained at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine to investigate post-traumatic electrophysiological (EEG) abnormalities and antiepileptogenic treatments as a part of a preclinical consortium, the Epilepsy Bioinformatics Study for Antiepileptogenic Therapy (EpiBioS4Rx).

Christos’ current work is focused on developing new approaches to treat epilepsy and associated memory impairments without side effects. To that end, he developed a novel closed-loop approach to stop seizures, pathological oscillations and interictal discharges in real time using optogenetics. Using this selective approach, he was able to determine a novel therapeutic role for hippocampal area CA2 in epilepsy. Also, his experience in the Scharfman laboratory made him highly interested in Alzheimer’s disease and especially the role of high frequency oscillations as a biomarker. To that end, he is using large-scale in vivo electrophysiology in different animal models of AD to search for early EEG biomarkers.     

Christos has served on committees at the International League against Epilepsy (ILAE) and he is a founding member of the Young Epilepsy Section. He has been awarded the Herbert H. Jasper Junior Investigator Travel Award and supported by the ILAE, AES, the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation, the Greek National Scholarships Foundation, the Bodossaki Foundation, and the World Hellenic Biomedical Association. His work is also supported by NYU’s Comprehensive Epilepsy Center FACES Pilot Research Grant to advance brain stimulation strategies in temporal lobe epilepsy.

Current support:


FACES (Finding a Cure for Epilepsy and Seizures) Pilot Research Grant

Select Publications

  • Lisgaras CP*, Scharfman HE. Interictal spikes in Alzheimer’s disease: Preclinical evidence for dominance of the dentate gyrus and cholinergic control by the medial septum. Neurobiol Dis. 2023 Sep 14;187:106294. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2023.106294. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37714307. *corresponding author

  • Whitebirch AC, Santoro B, Barnett A, Lisgaras CP, Scharfman HE, Siegelbaum SA. Reduced cholecystokinin-expressing interneuron input contributes to disinhibition of the hippocampal CA2 region in a mouse model of temporal lobe epilepsy. J Neurosci. 2023 Aug 25:JN-RM-2091-22. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2091-22.2023. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37643861.

  • Saletti PG*, Casillas-Espinosa PM*, Lisgaras CP*, Mowrey WB, Li Q, Liu W, Brady RD, Ali I, Silva J, Yamakawa G, Hudson M, Li C, Braine EL, Coles L, Cloyd JC, Jones NC, Shultz SR, Moshé SL, O’Brien TJ, Galanopoulou AS. Tau Phosphorylation Patterns in the Rat Cerebral Cortex After Traumatic Brain Injury and Sodium Selenate Effects: An Epibios4rx Project 2 Study. J Neurotrauma. 2023 May 2. doi: 10.1089/neu.2022.0219. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36950806. *co-first authors

  • Lisgaras CP, Scharfman HE. High Frequency Oscillations (250-500Hz) in Animal Models of Alzheimer’s Disease and Two Animal Models of Epilepsy. Epilepsia. 2022 Nov 8. doi: 10.1111/epi.17462. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36346209.

  • Lisgaras CP, Scharfman HE. Robust Chronic Convulsive Seizures, High Frequency Oscillations, and Human Seizure Onset Patterns in an Intrahippocampal Kainic Acid Model in Mice. Neurobiol Dis. 2022 May;166:105637. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2022.105637. Epub 2022 Jan 26. PMID: 35091040; PMCID: PMC9034729. Featured on the cover

  • Lisgaras CP,* Mikroulis A, Psarropoulou C.* Region-specific Effects of Early-life Status Epilepticus on the Adult Hippocampal CA3 – Medial Entorhinal Cortex Circuitry In vitro: Focus on Interictal Spikes and Concurrent High-Frequency Oscillations. Neuroscience. 2021 Jul 1;466:235-247. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2021.04.030. Epub 2021 May 4. PMID: 33961962. *Corresponding authors

  • Saletti PG, Ali I, Casillas-Espinosa PM, Semple BD, Lisgaras CP, Moshé SL, Galanopoulou AS. In Search of Antiepileptogenic Treatments for Post-Traumatic Epilepsy. Neurobiol Dis. 2019 Mar;123:86-99. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2018.06.017. Epub 2018 Jun 22. PMID: 29936231; PMCID: PMC6309524.