We are building a group of like-minded scientists who are passionate about understanding the complexities of the brain. We focus on understanding multiple aspects of brain physiology, from the biological mechanisms that regulate how blood flows throughout the brain in health and in disease, to the mechanisms by which cerebrospinal fluid flows and contributes to brain cleaning. The lab is located in the department of physiology at the University of Maryland Baltimore School of Medicine. We are currently looking to hire passionate, talented students and postdocs. If you are interested in learning more and potentially working with us, please use the contact form to get in touch!

Tom Longden, PhD
Principal Investigator

I received both my B.Sc with honors and my PhD in Pharmacology from the University of Manchester in the UK, and I then completed my postdoctoral training under Mark Nelson at the University of Vermont. I am passionate about ion channels, GPCRs, cerebral blood flow, and I am fascinated by pericytes. When I am not in the lab peering into a microscope, I am usually walking my dog or reading. My aim is to build a nurturing environment in which scientists can develop their ideas and contribute answers to some of the big questions in cardiovascular biology and neuroscience.

Ashwini Hariharan, PhD
American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellow

I grew up in Mumbai, India where I received my bachelor’s degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences followed by a master’s degree in Pharmacology and Toxicology. I recently graduated with a PhD in Anatomy from the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand; my doctoral research focused on the implications of endothelial nitric oxide synthase deficiency for Alzheimer’s disease. I am interested in exploring the intricacies of cerebrovascular function, especially in relation to neurodegeneration. Besides science, I enjoy reading and traveling.

Nick Weir
Postdoctoral Fellow

 I received my B.Sc (Pharmacology and Physiology), M.Sc (Neuropharmacology) and PhD (Biomedical Engineering) from Nottingham Trent University, UK. My doctoral research focused on generating and characterising cortical organoids using mass spectrometry and transcriptomic techniques. I recently started my postdoctoral training with the Longden lab and am interested in learning new techniques and exploring mechanisms of vascular plasticity within the brain. In my free time, I enjoy cooking, exercise and board games.

Liuruimin (Amy) Xiang
Graduate Student

I originally came from Guangzhou, China and I earned my Bachelor’s degree of neuroscience in Wesleyan College in Macon, Georgia. During my college years, I had the honor to receive a summer internship in Dr. Roger Nicoll’s lab at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), where I picked up a passion for electrophysiology. After my graduation, I worked as a research assistant in Dr. Jianyang Du’s lab at the University of Toledo, Ohio and worked on a project on the PH sensitivity of TRPM3. I am interested in ion channels and how specific channels relate to disorders in the brain, and currently I’m pursuing this interest by entering the Program in Neuroscience at UMB.

Ryan Mayers
Rotating Graduate Student

I received my BA in Neurobiology from the University of Pennsylvania before completing a postbaccalaureate fellowship at the NIH and an MS in Biotechnology from Northwestern University. My research interests are in functional mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases; for my MS, I examined the impacts of NEK1 mutations on cytoskeletal and transport phenotypes in ALS. I have also previously worked on Parkinson’s Disease and TBI-related projects, and am excited to explore the role of pericytes on vascular control in Alzheimer’s in the Longden lab! Outside of the lab, I enjoy hiking, cooking, and hosting game nights.

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Barry Huang
Lab Manager

I’m originally from Boston, MA and earned a Bachelor of Science in Molecular and Cellular Biology from Johns Hopkins University. I have experience in a variety of basic science research settings including working in cell biology, biological chemistry, pathology, mucosal immunology, and cancer research labs. I joined the Longden Lab in June of 2019. In my free time, I enjoy sports, board games, and spending time outdoors. Feel free to stop on by the lab – I’d love to meet you!


Abby Vigderman, Rotating Graduate Student (2021)PhD candidate in Neuroscience at University of Maryland.
Colin Robertson, Rotating Graduate Student (2020)PhD candidate in Neuroscience at University of Maryland.
Daniela Garcia, Postdoctoral Fellow (2019).
Cullen Ross, Lab Manager (2018-2019), now PhD candidate in Molecular Medicine at University of Maryland.