Irwin B. Levitan, Ph.D., is the Founding Chair of the Department of Neuroscience at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Levitan received his undergraduate, Masters and Ph.D. degrees in Biochemistry from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. After postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, and the University of California at San Diego, he was a group leader at the Friedrich Miescher Institute in Basel, Switzerland where he began investigations of the regulation of neuronal excitability in the marine mollusc Aplysia. He continued these studies after moving to the Department of Biochemistry at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts where he was Professor of Biochemistry and founding Director of the Volen Center for Complex Systems. While at Brandeis he began investigating the modulation of ion channel proteins, using a combination of molecular and biophysical approaches.