Explore This Laboratory


The goal of the Neuroanesthesia Research Laboratory, directed by Oluwaseun Johnson-Akeju, MD, MMSc, at Massachusetts General Hospital, is to develop tools and strategies to optimize post-operative cognitive recovery.

The ability to perform surgery or invasive procedures safely and humanely relies on the delivery of general anesthesia—a practice that was first publicly demonstrated at Massachusetts General Hospital in 1846. General anesthesia is a reversible drug-induced state that consists of unconsciousness, amnesia, analgesia and immobility with maintenance of physiological stability. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, it is estimated that more than 60,000 patients in the United States receive general anesthesia every year for surgery. The brain, especially for older patients, often does not return to normal after general anesthesia. Some patients develop a serious deficit that comes and goes while others demonstrate a significant and persistent decline in performance on neuropsychological tests.

Our Research

Three major approaches of our research:

  • Pharmaco-EEG strategies to aid drug discovery efforts
  • Principled brain monitoring strategies to aid personalized anesthetic care
  • Systems biology strategies to aid risk stratification of post-operative neurocognitive dysfunction

View our recent publications

Clinical Trials

We are currently recruiting patients for the following studies:

  • Minimizing Neurological Dysfunction with Dexmedetomidine-induced Sleep (MINDDS) - currently limited to patients over 65-years-old who are scheduled to have heart surgery at Mass General
  • Repurposing dexmedetomidine into an oral sleep therapeutic - currently limited to healthy volunteers 18-50 years of age
  • Additional studies of human neurophysiology and behavior during induction, maintenance and emergence from general anesthesia - typically limited to healthy volunteers 18-36 years of age

If you are interested in participating in any of the above studies, call us at 617-726-5186 or e-mail akejulab@mgh.harvard.edu

Join the Lab

A postdoctoral position is currently available. If you are interested in being considered for a position, send an email to oluwaseun.akeju@mgh.harvard.edu.

Required qualifications for this position are:

  • At least one first-authored paper in areas related to systems or computational neuroscience
  • Research experience in one of these fields: neurophysiology, imaging, MATLAB (or equivalent) programming or computational statistics.

Preference will be given to applicants interested in research questions related to neuroscience.