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Rachel Cheong, PhD

Rachel Cheong has been active in the research group since early 2013. Her current research is focusing on the role oxytocin in Huntington’s disease. Psychiatric symptoms, as depression, anxiety and difficulties in social interactions, are frequent and often appear prior to motor-symptoms in HD. Rachel’s research investigates whether dysfunction of the oxytocin system contributes to early neuropsychiatric symptoms in HD, and whether it can be targeted as a future therapeutic strategy.

Photo of Rachel Cheong


2019 - ongoing: Assistant researcher, TNU, Medical Faculty, Lund University, Sweden.

2017 - 2018: Postdoctoral fellowship, TNU, Medical Faculty, Lund University, Sweden. Postdoctoral stipend from Swedish Society for Medical Research.

2016: Research assistant, Region Skåne, Sweden.

2015: Assistant researcher, TNU, Medical Faculty, Lund University, Sweden.

2013 - 2014: Postdoctoral fellowship, TNU, Medical Faculty, Lund University, Sweden.
Project: Role of hypothalamic dysfunction for non-motor aspects of Huntington's disease.
Supervisor: Professor Åsa Petersen.


2009 - 2012: Doctor of Philosophy.
University of Otago, New Zealand
Thesis: Effects of estradiol on gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons
Supervisor: Dr. István Abrahám and Professor Allan Herbison

2008: Bachelor of Biomedical Science with Honours (First Class Honours)
University of Otago, New Zealand
Dissertation title: Estrogen induces rapid ERK1/2 phosphorylation in GnRH neurons in vivo.

2005 - 2007: Bachelor of Biomedical Science in Human Reproduction and Development
University of Otago, New Zealand


Fjalldal S, Follin C, Gabery S, Sundgren PC, Björkman-Burtscher IM, Lätt J, Mannfolk P, Nordström CH, Rylander L, Ekman B, Cheong R, Pålsson A, Petersén Å and Erfurth EM.
Detailed assessment of hypothalamic damage in craniopharyngioma patients with obesity.
International Journal of Obesity (Lond). 2019 43: 533-544 (2019) 

Baldo B, Sajjad MU, Cheong RY, Bigarreau J, Vijayvargia R, McLean C, Perrier AL, Seong IS, Halliday G, Petersén Å and Kirik D.
Quantification of Total and Mutant Huntingtin Protein Levels in Biospecimens Using a Novel alphaLISA Assay.
ENeuro 5 (4): ENEURO.0234-18.2018 (2018)

Siebzehnrübl FA, Raber KA, Urbach YK, Schulze-Krebs A, Canneva F, Moceri S, Habermeyer J, Achoui D, Gupta B, Steindler DA, Stephan M, Nguyen HP, Bonin M, Riess O, Bauer A, Aigner L, Couillard-Despres S, Paucar MA, Svenningsson P, Osmand A, Andreew A, Zabel C, Weiss A, Kuhn R, Moussaoui S, Blockx I, Van der Linden A, Cheong RY, Roybon L, Petersén Å and von Hörsten S.
Early postnatal behavioral, cellular, and molecular changes in models of Huntington disease are reversible by HDAC inhibition.
PNAS 115 (37): E8765-E8774 (2018)

Gawlik KI, Harandi VM, Cheong RY, Petersén Å and Durbeej M.
Laminin α1 reduces muscular dystrophy in dy2J mice.
Matrix Biology 70: 36-79 (2018)

Gabery S, Georgiou-Karistianis N, Lundh SH, Cheong RY, Churchyard A, Chua P, Stout JC, Egan GF, Kirik D and Petersén Å.
Volumetric Analysis of the Hypothalamus in Huntington Disease Using 3T MRI: The IMAGE-HD Study.
PLoS One. 2015 Feb 6;10(2):e0117593.

Baldo B, Cheong RY and Petersén Å.
Effects of Deletion of Mutant Huntingtin in Steroidogenic Factor 1 Neurons on the Psychiatric and Metabolic Phenotype in the BACHD Mouse Model of Huntington Disease.
PLoS One 9(10): e107691 (2014)

Cheong RY, Czieselsky K, Porteous R, Herbison AE.
Expression of ESR1 in Glutamatergic and GABAergic Neurons Is Essential for Normal Puberty Onset, Estrogen Feedback, and Fertility in Female Mice.
Journal of Neuroscience (2015) 35(43):14533-43.

Cheong RY, Porteous R, Chambon P, Abrahám I, Herbison AE.
Effects of neuron-specific estrogen receptor (ER) α and ERβ deletion on the acute estrogen negative feedback mechanism in adult female mice.
Endocrinology (2014) 155(4):1418-1427.

Kwakowsky A, Cheong RY, Herbison AE, Ábrahám IM.
Non-classical effects of estradiol on cAMP responsive element binding protein phosphorylation in gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons: mechanisms and role.
Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology (2014) 35(1):31-41.

Kwakowsky A, Koszegi Z, Cheong RY, Abrahám IM.
Neuroprotective effects of non-classical estrogen-like signaling activators: from mechanism to potential implications.
CNS Neurol Disord Drug Targets (2013) 12(8):1219-25.

Cheong RY, Kwakowsky A, Barad Z, Porteous R, Herbison AE and Ábrahám IM.
Estradiol acts directly and indirectly on multiple signaling pathways to phosphorylate cAMP-response element binding protein in gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons.
Endocrinology (2012) 153: 3792-3803.

Kőszegi Z, Szegő EM, Cheong RY, Tolod-Kemp E and Ábrahám IM.
Post-lesion estradiol treatment restores cortical cholinergic innervations via estrogen receptor alpha dependent non-classical estrogen signaling in vivo.
Endocrinology (2011) 152: 3471-82.

Page Manager:

Rachel Cheong

Rachel Cheong, Assistant researcher
Born in 1986
Phone: +46 46 222 45 25
E-mail: Rachel [dot] Cheong [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se

Lund University
Translational Neuroendocrinology Research Unit
Baravägen 27
221 84 Lund

Translational Neuroendocrine Research Unit
Baravägen 27, BMC D11
221 84 Lund