Our Team

Makoto Taniguchi, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
173 Ashley Ave, BSB410C
Charleston, SC, 29425

Degree(s): Ph.D. in Biology from Tokyo Metropolitan University in Tokyo, 2007

Biography: Dr. Taniguchi is an Assistant Professor of the Department of Neuroscience at the Medical University of South Carolina. Dr. Taniguchi earned his Ph.D. from Tokyo Metropolitan University in Tokyo, Japan in molecular biology training. For the postdoctoral training, He joined Dr. Christopher Cowan laboratory at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (TX) and extended the research scope to psychiatric neuroscience, Drug addiction. Dr. Taniguchi was then recruited to McLean Hospital, a psychiatric affiliate of Harvard Medical School, as an instructor in the Department of Psychiatry (MA) and investigated stress-related psychiatric disorders. Dr. Taniguchi studies on the epigenetic and transcriptional mechanisms that control behavioral plasticity in response to emotional events, including stress and abuse of drugs.


Rose Marie Akiki, B.S.

MD-PhD Student
68 President Street, BEB 232A
Charleston, SC 29425

Degree(s): B.S. in Biology from the American University of Beirut, 2018  

Biography: Rose Marie's ambitions are focused on studying the molecular neurobiology of mental illnesses notably the molecular mechanisms behind drug reward learning. During her undergraduate and her medical school years, she investigated immune disturbances underlying Primary Immunodeficiency Disorders. She later gained interest in psychiatric illnesses while working on a clinical study on Major Depressive Disorder treatments. As a Ph.D. student in the Cowan lab and Taniguchi Lab, Rose Marie is using cutting-edge molecular tools to investigate the role of long non-coding RNA in driving neuronal plasticity underlying learning of drug reward. She hopes that via her work she could contribute to understanding the molecular mechanisms of emotions