Hideaki Yano


Assistant Professor

Pharmaceutical Sciences


  • Neuromodulatory receptors
  • Signaling bias
  • Biosensors
  • Drug development


Dr. Yano’s research has been dedicated to understanding and developing therapeutics targeting GPCRs, particularly neuromodulator receptors. He has developed tools to understand biased agonism in dopamine receptors and has discovered previously unappreciated forms of signaling bias among G protein subtypes. These forms of bias translate to electrophysiological and behavioral levels, demonstrating a therapeutic proof-of-concept in neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders. Together, his significant contributions center around mechanistic understanding of ligand actions for the D1, D2, and D3 receptors. Dr. Yano has also developed a long-standing interest in substance use disorders (SUDs) with extensive publication records. In recent years, he has focused on cannabinoid receptors and synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonists (SCRAs) as this class of drugs comprises a major public health concern in the past decade. He strives to advance our understanding of SUDs surrounding SCRA abuse, particularly the mechanisms of action for extreme pharmacodynamic properties and toxicities related to SCRAs and develop novel medications against them. Primarily focusing on the field of neuropharmacology that intersects molecular pharmacology and ex vivo pharmacology, work from Dr. Yano’s laboratory encompasses techniques involving in vitro pharmacology, neurophysiology, and biophysics employing biosensor development.

Courses Taught


2023 – Gerald E. Schumacher Pharmacy Faculty Award
2019 – Journal article (Novel and Potent dopamine D2 receptor…) selected for a cover and editors’ choice
2019 – Symposium for Future Medicine and Health Care Travel Award
2018 – Journal article (Gs- versus Golf-dependent functional selectivity…) featured on NIDA website
2014-2016 – Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Fellowship
2013 – Young scientist travel award for Experimental Biology2011 – Kavli travel grant for Society for Neuroscience


Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, NARSAD Young Investigator Award “Interactions of Synthetic Cannabinoids with Off-target Sites” 01/15/2020 – 01/14/2023 (NCE)

Tier 1 Intramural Grant “3D anatomical mapping of mouse brain for co-expressed receptors involved in neuropsychiatric disease” 07/01/2021 – 06/30/2023 (NCE)


Urizar E*, Yano H*, Kolster R, Galés C, Lambert N, Javitch JA: CODA-RET reveals functional selectivity as a result of GPCR heteromerization. Nat Chem Biol 2011, 7(9):624-630. *equal contribution, PMC3158273

Frederick AL*, Yano H*, Trifilieff P*, Vishwasrao HD, Biezonski D, Mészáros J, Urizar E, Sibley DR, Kellendonk C, Sonntag KC, Graham DL, Colbran RJ, Stanwood GD, Javitch JA, Evidence against dopamine D1/D2 receptor heteromers. Mol Psychiatry, 2015 VOL. 20, NO. 11, pp. 1373-85. *equal contribution, PMC4492915

Sánchez-Soto M, Bonifazi A, Cai NS, Ellenberger MP, Newman AH, Ferré S, Yano H*: Evidence for Noncanonical Neurotransmitter Activation: Norepinephrine as a Dopamine D2-Like Receptor Agonist. Molecular Pharmacology 2016, 89(4):457-466. *corresponding, PMC4809307

Yano H*, Provasi D, Cai NS, Filizola M, Ferre S, Javitch JA*, Development of novel biosensors to study receptormediated activation of the G-protein α subunits Gs and Golf. J Biol Chem. 2017 VOL. 292, NO. 49, pp. 19989–19998. *corresponding, PMC5723988

Yano H*, Cai NS, Xu M, Verma RK, Rea W, Hoffman AF, Shi L, Javitch JA, Bonci A, Ferre S, Gs- versus Golf-dependent functional selectivity mediated by the dopamine D1 receptor. Nat Commun. 2018 Feb 5;9(1):486. *corresponding (featured on NIDA website), PMC5799184

Bonifazi A*, Yano H*, Guerrero AM, Kumar V, Hoffman AF, Lupica CR, Shi L, Newman AH, Novel and potent dopamine D2 receptor Go-protein biased agonists. ACS Pharm & Tansl Sci 2019, Feb 8;2(1):52-65. *equal contribution, PMC6371206

Yano H*, Adhikari P, Naing S, Hoffman AF, Baumann MH, Lupica CR, Shi L*, Positive allosteric modulation of the 5-HT1A receptor by indole-based synthetic cannabinoids abused by humans, *corresponding, ACS Chem Neurosci. 2020, May 20;11(10):1400-1405. PMC8275447

Yano H+*, Chitsazi R+, Lucaj C, Tran P, Hoffman AF, Baumann MH, Lupica CR, Shi L*. A subtle structural modification of a synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist drastically increases its efficacy at the CB1 receptor. +equal contribution, *corresponding, ACS Chem Neurosci. 2023, Nov 1;14(21):3928-3940. PMC10623572

Semeano A, Garland R, Bonifazi A, Lee KH, Famiglietti J, Zhang W, Jo YJ, Battiti FO, Shi L, Newman AH, Yano H*, Linkers in bitopic agonists shape bias profile among transducers for the dopamine D2 and D3 receptors. bioRxiv preprint. 2024 Jan. 8; https://doi.org/10.1101/2024.01.07.574547. *corresponding

Nguyen AM, Semeano A, Quach V, Inoue A, Nichols DE, Yano H*, Characterization of Gαs and Gαolf activation by catechol and non-catechol dopamine D1 receptor agonists. bioRxiv preprint. 2024 Jan. 7; https://doi.org/10.1101/2023.10.03.560682. *corresponding