Dr Sally Till

Our goal is to identify the causal events underlying symptoms of neurodevelopmental disorders.

Dr Sally Till



Hugh Robson Building

15 George Square

Edinburgh EH8 9XD

Contact details

Email: s.till@ed.ac.uk

Lab website: https://sidb.org.uk/sally-till

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Personal profile

2023 - present: Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences 

2015 - 2023: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Edinburgh

2012 - 2015:  Autistica Fellow at the Patrick Wild Centre, University of Edinburgh

2006 - 2012:  Postdoctoral researcher, Centre for Integrative Physiology, University of Edinburgh


Ph.D. in Neurobiology and Behaviour at Columbia University, New York, USA

B.Sc. in Neuroscience and Physiology at the University of California, San Diego, USA


Effective therapies to reverse and/or prevent the emergence of the core debilitating traits associated with autism and related neurodevelopmental disorders are a currently unmet need. While models enable studies of the causes underlying these conditions, a major obstacle for treatment development has been the lack of robust behavioural, physiological, and neural circuit signatures in preclinical models that are predictive of clinical efficacy.

Our team is addressing these challenges using a combination of different methods including MRI, EEG recordings, cardiovascular monitoring, optogenetics and behavioural analysis of rodent models to explore the biological mechanisms underlying neurodevelopmental disorders and what these conditions can tell us about normal brain development and function. Current topics of interest include:

  • the neural basis of differences in social and emotional processing
  • how epilepsy and sleep disorders influence cognitive performance, and
  • developing ways to translate findings from preclinical research to benefit people.


EU Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme

Simons Initiative for the Developing Brain (SIDB)

Team members

Jingjing Ye, PhD candidate, Marie Skłodowska-Curie ITN

Harry Bradford-Dunk, PhD candidate, Precision Medicine DTP

Lucy Pritchard; PhD candidate, SIDB DTP


Dr. Andrew Stanfield, CCBS University of Edinburgh

Dr. Alfredo Gonzalez-Sulser, CDBS University of Edinburgh

Dr. Thomas Watson, CDBS University of Edinburgh

Prof. Peter Kind, CDBS University of Edinburgh

Prof. Emma Wood, CDBS University of Edinburgh

Dr. Kristoffer Månsson, Karolinska Institute


  • Couto-Ovejero, S.*, Ye, J.*, Kind, P.C., Till, S.M.*, Watson, T.C.* (2023) Cerebellar contributions to fear-based emotional processing: relevance to understanding the neural circuits involved in autism. Front Sys Nsci. doi: 10.3389/fnsys.2023.1229627
  • Grandjean, J., et al. (2023) A consensus protocol for functional connectivity analysis in the rat brain. Nat Nsci. doi: 10.1038/s41593-023-01328-1.
  • Buller-Peralta, I., Maicas-Royo, J., Lu, Z., Till, S.M., Wood, E.R., Kind, P.C., Escudero, J., Gonzalez-Sulser, A. (2022) Abnormal brain state distribution and network connectivity in a SYNGAP1 rat model. Brain Comms. doi:10.1093/braincomms/fcac263.
  • Till S.M., Hickson R.D.L., Kind P.C. (2022) Cross-species considerations in models of neurodevelopmental disorders. TINS. doi:10.1016/j.tins.2021.12.005.
  • Mastro, T.L., Preza, A., Basu, S., Chattarji, S., Till, S.M., Kind, P.C., Kennedy, M.B. (2020) A sex difference in the composition of the rodent postsynaptic density. eLife. doi:10.7554/eLife.52656.
  • Asiminas, A.*, Jackson, A.D.*, Till, S.M.+, Louros, S.+, Dando, O., Bear M.F., Chattarji, S., Hardingham, G.H., Osterweil, E.K., Wyllie, D.J.A., Wood, E.R., Kind, P.C. (2019) Sustained correction of associative learning deficits following brief, early treatment in a rat model of Fragile X Syndrome. Sci Transl Med. doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.aao0498.
  • Till, S.M., Asiminas, A., Jackson, A.D., Katsanevaki, D., Barnes, S.A., Osterweil, E.K., Bear, M.F., Chattarji, S., Wood, E., Wyllie, D.J.A., and Kind, P.C. (2015) Conserved hippocampal cellular pathophysiology but distinct behavioral deficits in a new rat model of FXS. Human Molecular Genetics. doi:10.1093/hmg/ddv299.
  • Till, S.M., Wijetunge, L.S., Seidel, V.G., Harlow, E.G., Wright, A.K., Bagni, C., Contractor, A., Gillingwater T.H., Kind P.C. (2012) Altered maturation of the primary somatosensory cortex in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome. Human Molecular Genetics. doi: 10.1093/hmg/dds030.
  • Till, S.M., Li, H-L., Miniaci, M.C., Kandel, E.R. Choi, Y-B. (2011) A pre-synaptic role of FMRP in protein synthesis-dependent long-term plasticity in Aplysia Californica. Learn&Mem. doi:10.1101/lm.1958811.
  • Till, S.M. The developmental roles of FMRP. (2010) Biochemical Society Trans. doi:10.1042/BST0380507.
  • Harlow, E.G., Till, S.M., Russell, T.A, Wijetunge, L.S., Kind, P.C., Contractor, A. (2010) Critical period plasticity is disrupted in the barrel cortex of fragile X mice. Neuron. doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2010.01.024.
  • Wijetunge, L.S., Till S.M., Gillingwater T.H., Ingham C.A., Kind P.C. (2008) mGluR5 regulates glutamate-dependent development of the mouse somatosensory cortex. J Nsci. doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2600-08.2008.

Information for students:

Willingness to discuss research projects with undergraduate and postgraduate students: YES - please click here