Hsiang-Tung Chang

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Hsiang-Tung Chang
Born(1907-11-27)27 November 1907
DiedNovember 4, 2007(2007-11-04) (aged 99)
Alma materPeking University Yale University
Scientific career
FieldsNeuroscience Physiology
InstitutionsYale School of Medicine

Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research

Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, CAS
Academic advisorsJohn Farquhar Fulton, Clinton N. Woolsey

Hsiang-Tung Chang or Zhang Xiangtong (simplified Chinese: 张香桐; traditional Chinese: 張香桐; pinyin: Zhāng Xiāngtóng) (November 27, 1907 – November 4, 2007) was a renowned neurophysiologist of China and an academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).[1] He carried out fundamental studies on the structure and function of the central nervous system. Chang was one of the pioneers in the study of dendritic potentials and among the first to recognize the functional significance of dendrites in the central nervous system. He was the first to propose a fundamental distinction between axosomatic and axodendritic synapses.

Chang was regarded as one of founders of China's neuroscience. He helped found Shanghai Institute of Brain Research of CAS (later Institute of Neuroscience of CAS), which is a part of Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences nowadays.

Chang was born at Zhengding, Hebei Province. He graduated from the Department of Psychology, Peking University in 1933,[2] and obtained a doctor of philosophy in physiology from Yale University in the United States in 1946. From 1948 to 1952, Chang was an assistant professor at Yale School of Medicine. From 1952 to 1956, Chang was an associate researcher at Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research. After his return to China in late 1956, he served as a research fellow at Shanghai Institute of Physiology of CAS. He became the director of Shanghai Institute of Brain Research of CAS in 1980 and, since his retirement in 1984, the honorary director of the Institute.

In the 1940s and 50s, Chang focused on auditory, visual and sensorimotor systems.[3]

Chang became foreign academician-elect of USSR Academy of Sciences in 1966, honorary foreign member of Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium in 1982 and honorary member of International Association for the Study of Pain in 1989. He received the Lifetime Achievement Award from International Neural Network Society in 1993.


  1. ^ "张香桐 (in Chinese)".
  2. ^ "人物略传 (in Chinese)".
  3. ^ Chen, Dao-fen (2012). "Hsiang-Tung Chang's scientific contributions:a legend and a legacy". Acta Physiologica Sinica. 64 (5): 587.