Dr. Baoji Xu received his BS from the Xiamen University, China and his PhD from the Stanford University, California. His graduate work involved in elucidating the mechanisms that control transcription initiation and replication of mitochondrial DNA. He studied the function of neurotrophins in the brain as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, San Francisco. His postdoctoral work demonstrated the importance of neurotrophins in the maintenance of the cerebral cortex and discovered the novel function of neurotrophins in the control of body weight. Before joining the Department of Pharmacology at the Georgetown University as an assistant professor in 2003, he worked in a company to develop obesity drugs for one year and half. His current laboratory is interested in the neural and molecular basis underlying the control of body weight by neurotrophin brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), in examining the role of neurotrophins in the function and survival of striatal neurons, and in elucidating the mechanism by which chronic deficiencies of neurotrophins lead to degeneration of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons and formation of protein aggregates. His honors and awards include Rockefeller Foundation Pre-doctoral Fellowship and American Heart Association Scientist Development Award.