Academic Profile : Faculty

Prof Anna Barron (For Web) v2.png picture
Asst Prof Barron Anna
Nanyang Assistant Professor, Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine
Dr Anna Barron is a Nanyang Assistant Professor of Neurobiology of Aging and Disease at the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine (LKCMedicine), Nanyang Technological University and Assistant Director of the Brain Bank Singapore .

After obtaining her PhD in Neuroscience from The University of Western Australia, she carried out postdoctoral research in the US and Japan, first at the University of Southern California, followed by The University of Tokyo. Her interest in the use of molecular neuroimaging techniques led her to join the National Institute of Radiological Sciences, Japan, where she focused on the development and application of in vivo mitochondrial-targeted neuroimaging approaches. In 2017 she joined the faculty of LKCMedicine.

She has won a number of prestigious awards in recognition of her research, including the American-Australian Neurological Fellowship in 2009, the Japan Society for the Promotion for Science Invitational Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2010, the Alzheimer`s Association Imaging Consortium Fellowship in 2014 and the internationally competitive Alzheimer's Association Research Grant in 2018. In 2024 she was selected as an European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) Global Investigator.

Using advanced neuroimaging approaches, including PET and multiphoton fluorescence microscopy, in combination with cellular and molecular techniques, her team investigates how mitochondria contribute to brain health, aging and disease. Her research aims to uncover novel biomarkers and potential therapeutic avenues to promote healthy brain aging.
Neurobiology of Aging and Disease Laboratory
The brain is the most energetically demanding organ of the body and is highly vulnerable to energetic stress. Dysfunction of the energy producing organelle of the cell, mitochondria, plays a pivotal role in brain development, aging and disease. We study mitochondrial function across the spectrum of brain health and disease, focusing on two metabolically distinct cell populations of the brain: microglia and neurons. Through studying these fundamental metabolic processes, we aim to uncover novel mitochondrial-targeted biomarkers and therapeutics for the diagnosis and treatment of brain disease.

• Jia Hui Wong, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
• Chih Hung Lo, Deans Postdoctoral Fellow
• Kei Onn Lai, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
• Jia Min Tan, PhD Student
• Wei Jing Chong, PhD Student
  • Cellular metabolism as a developmental regulator of microglial fate and function
  • Development of a genetically-encoded tool for light-mediated control of cellular metabolism
  • EMBO Global Investigator Network (GIN)- Anna Barron
  • Therapeutic and biomarker discovery for lysosomal acidification dysfunction in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias
EMBO Global Investigator (2024)
Women in Endocrinology Young Investigator Award (2018)
Nanyang Assistant Professorship (2017)
Australian Women in Endocrinology Merit Award (2008)
West Australian Department of Health Prize (2008)
Australian Neuromuscular Research Institute Prize (2006)
Fellowships & Other Recognition
Alzheimer's Imaging Consortium Fellowship (2017)
Young Investigator Fellowship, International Meeting on Steroids and Nervous System (2011)
Japan Society for Promotion of Science Postdoctoral Fellowship (2010)
American-Australian Association Neurological Fellowship (2009)
Courses Taught
The Ethics and Practice of Research (MD7001) • Course Coordinator
MBBS Y2 Mental Health Module • Scientific Lead
MBBS Y2 Nervous System • Content Expert
Supervision of PhD Students

Wei Jing Chong
Targeting Cellular Metabolism to Modulate Microglial Function in Health and Disease

Jia Min Tan
Role of adaptive immunity in Alzheimer’s disease


Kei Onn Lai
Immunomodulatory functions of the mitochondrial translocator protein in Alzheimer’s disease (conferred August 2023)
Current position: Eric & Wendy Schmidt AI Postdoctoral Fellow, NTU, Singapore

Lauren Fairley
TSPO-VDAC complex as a regulator of microglial function (conferred 2022),
Current position: Postdoctoral Fellow University Technology Sydney, Australia