Dept. of Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine

Mailing Address:

Dept. of Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine
1120 15th Street, Rm. CA3016
Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University
Augusta, GA 30912

Office phone: 706-721-5616


BA  -  Florida State University, 1990
PhD  -  University of Virginia,  1996


Postdoc  -  Brigham and Women’s Hospital / Harvard Medical School, 1996-2000

Research interests:

The taste system plays a critical role in food selection and nutrition.  The McCluskey lab has a long-standing interest in the immune regulation of taste function in health and disease. Following nerve injury, taste recovers making this an excellent model system for understanding immune mechanisms that mediate nerve and target cell regeneration.  Our recent work indicates that the IL-1 signaling pathway is critical for taste bud regeneration.  Current efforts are aimed at determining when and where this and other cytokines are needed for recovery.  We also use animal models of gut inflammation, such as enteral lipopolysaccharide and colitis, in order to understand taste changes that potentially food intake.

Current projects:

Cytokines in the regenerating taste system (R01 DC016668) , Taste changes in a mouse model of inflammatory bowel disease (MCG Research Incentive).


Lab members:   Guankuo (Glenn) Dong, Schuyler Kogan, Julia Powell, MSP students: Natasha Venugopal, Eddy Chang 

Selected publications:

  1. He L and McCluskey LP (2017) Regression of lingual lymphatic vessels in sodium-restricted mice.  J Histochem Cytochem, PMID 29268631.
  2. Kumarhia D and McCluskey LP (2016) Inflammatory stimuli acutely modulate peripheral taste function.  J Neurophysiol 115(6): 2964-75, PMID: 27009163.
  3. Zhu X and McCluskey LP (2014) Ingestion of bacterial lipopolysaccharide inhibits sweet taste function.  Neuroscience  258: 47-61. PMID: 24215981.
  4. He L, Yadgarov A, Sharif S, and McCluskey LP (2012) Aging profoundly delays functional recovery from gustatory nerve injury.  Neuroscience 3:208-18.  PMID: 22387273.
  5.  Shi L, He L, Sarvepalli P, and McCluskey LP (2012) A functional role for IL-1 in the injured peripheral taste system.  J Neurosci Res 90:  816-830. PMID: 22213141.  * figure chosen for cover.


Dr. McCluskey's Publications - PubMed