David K. Grandy, PhD

Grandy head shot

Primary Affiliation

Professor - Physiology & Pharmacology Department

Program Affiliation

Physiology & Pharmacology
Neuroscience Graduate Program
Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology
Program in Molecular & Cellular Biosciences
Knight Cardiovascular Institute

Background & Education

Ph.D. 1985, Michigan State University


Grandy's Current Scopus 'h' Index = 63

I am interested in how neurons communicate with each other. At the molecular level, these cells express an array of proteins that are organized into several complex signaling systems. The signaling system I have chosen to study is composed of a receptor protein that is coupled to an effector molecule via a GTP-binding protein. The G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) constitute a large family whose members share several structural features yet are diverse with respect to the ligands they bind and the second messenger systems they modulate. Taking advantage of the sequence that is conserved between known G protein-coupled receptors, we employed two strategies that led to the cloning of 4 dopamine receptors, a novel orphan receptor homologous to the opiate receptors and an orphan biogenic amine receptor. Subsequently we discovered the endogenous peptide ligand for the opiate-like receptor now referred to as orphaninFQ/nociception (OFQ/N) and demonstrated one function of OFQ/N is to functionally antagonize the actions of morphine in animals. We are currently using a combination of behavioral, cellular, chemical, electrophysiological and molecular approaches to explore the involvement of the dopamine and OFQ/N receptors in the development of opiate tolerance and drug dependence. We also pharmacologically characterized the biogenic amine-like orphan receptor we discovered and it is activated by low molecular weight, endogenously synthesized compounds called 'trace amines;' a related molecule – 3-idothyronamine (T1AM) - we discovered in collaboration with Dr. Thomas Scanlan  as well as methamphetamine and Ecstasy. A major focus of my group is to understand the biology of this trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1) in healthy individuals and what actions of methamphetamine it might mediate. Our ultimate goals include destigmatizing drug use and mental health issues through education and community outreach and discovering a TAAR1-selective compound that will help prevent relapse to drug taking.

Please join us for the 2016 International Behavioral Neuroscience Society Meeting

Please join us for the 2016 Dopamine meeting

27th European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Congress Berlin, Germany October 2014

Methamphetamine receptor discovery

MRF Discovery Award Recipient

Grandy - Science, service and socks


Contact Information

Department of Physiology and Pharmacology
Oregon Health & Science University
3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd
Portland, OR  97239
Phone: (503) 494-4671
Fax: (503) 494-4352