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Andrew Jenkins PhD

Assistant Professor

Assistant Professor

Phone: 404-712-7533

Fax: 404-712-8145

Contact Websites


I am a scientist devoted to understanding how drugs and chemicals make us feel sleepy, or cause us to become unconscious. Through a better understanding of how brain function can be inhibited, we hope to better understand sleep, anesthesia and to develop new compounds that can control the sleep-wake balance. Over last 25 years, we have discovered several new drug-binding sites in the brain, and how these inhibitory ion channels as they are known, control the function of brain cells. Currently, we are also investigating how genetically related ion channels enable us to process sensory information.

Education & Training:

  • B.Sc. in Physics, Imperial College, London (1991)
  • Ph.D. in Biophysics, Imperial College, London (1995)
  • Postdoctoral Assistant, Imperial College, London (1996-1998)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Chicago (1998-1999)
  • Instructor, Weill Medical College of Cornell University (1999-2003) 

Board Certification:

  • American Board of Internal Medicine (1987)
  • Pulmonary (1990, 2000, 2010)
  • Critical Care(1991, 2001)
  • Sleep Medicine (ABSM 1997; ABIM 2007)

Recent & Noteworthy Publications:

Rye DB, Bliwise DL, Parker K, Trotti LM, Saini, P, Fairley, J, Freeman, A, Garcia PS, Owens MJ, Ritchie JC, Jenkins, A (2012) Modulation of vigilance in the primary hypersomnias by endogenous enhancement of GABAA receptors.  Science-Translational Medicine (in press).

O’Toole KK and Jenkins A (2011) The apparent voltage dependence of GABAA receptor activation and modulation is inversely related to channel open probability. Molecular Pharmacology 81(2):189-97.  PMID: 22042665

O’Toole KK and Jenkins A (2011) Discrete M3-M4 intracellular loop subdomains control specific aspects of GABAA receptor function. Journal of Biological Chemistry 286(44):37990-9.  PMID: 21903587

Watt EA, Betts BA, Kotey FO, Humbert DJ, Griffith TN, Kelly EW, Veneskey KC, Gil N, Rowan KC, Jenkins A, & Hall AC (2008) Menthol shares general anesthetic activity and sites of action on the GABAA receptor with the intravenous agent, propofol. European Journal of Pharmacology: 590(1-3):120-6.  PMID: 18593637

Jenkins A, Lobo IA, Gong D, Trudell JR. Solt K, Harris RA and Eger EI II (2008) General anesthetics have additive actions on three ligand gated ion channels. Anesthesia & Analgesia 107(2):486-93.  PMID: 18633027

Richardson JE, Garcia PA, O’Toole KK, Derry JMC, Bell SV & Jenkins A (2007) A conserved tyrosine in the b2 subunit M4 segment is a determinant of g-aminobutyric acid type A receptor sensitivity to propofol. Anesthesiology 107:412-8.  PMID:17721243

Sebel LE, Richardson JE, Singh SP, Bell SV & Jenkins A (2006) Additive actions of sevoflurane and propofol on g-aminobutyric acid receptor function. Anesthesiology 104:1176-83.  PMID: 16732088

Kash TL, Jenkins A, Trudell JR & Harrison NL (2003) Coupling of agonist binding to channel gating in the GABAA receptor. Nature 412:272-275.  PMID: 12529644

Jenkins A, Andreasen AE Trudell JR & Harrison NL (2002) Tryptophan scanning mutagenesis in TM4 of the GABAA receptor a1 subunit: Implications for modulation by inhaled anesthetics and ion channel structure. Neuropharmacology 43(5):669-678.  PMID: 12367612

Krasowski MD, Jenkins A, Flood, PD, Kung AK, Hopfinger AJ & Harrison NL (2001) The general anesthetic potencies of a series of propofol analogues correlate with potency for potentiation of GABA current at the GABAA receptor but not with lipid solubility. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 297:338-351.  PMID: 11259561

Jenkins A, Greenblatt EP, Bertaccini E, Faulkner HJ, Light A, Andreasen A, Viner A, Trudell JR & Harrison NL (2001) Evidence for a Common Binding Cavity for Three General Anesthetics within the GABAA Receptor. Journal of Neuroscience 21(6): RC136, 1-4.  PMID: 11245705

Jenkins A, Franks NP & Lieb WR (1999) Effects of temperature and volatile anesthetics on GABAA receptors. Anesthesiology 90(2), 484-491.  PMID: 9952156

Jenkins A, Franks, NP & Lieb, WR (1996) Actions of general anaesthetics on serotonin 5-HT3 receptors in N1E-115 neuroblastoma cells. British Journal of Pharmacology 117, 1507-1515. PMID: 8730747