Department of Herpetology

TANG Yezhong Research Group

Sound Communication in Anurans and Infrared Perception in Pit Viper Snakes Reseach Group

Update time: 08/19/2009

The behavioral neuroscience group, established in 2008, is focusing on sound communication in anurans and infrared perception in pit viper snakes. So far, we have three equipped laboratories: a sound proofed behavioral lab with video and audio systems, a molecular neurobiology lab with advanced apparatuses such as Leica cryostat Eppendorf centrifuge, Eppendorf BioPhotometer, BIO-RAD PCR apparatus, Thermo super-cold freezer and Nikon fluorescent microscope system, etc., and an electrophysiology lab with TDT system 3. Animal colonies including one toad and six snake species have been placed at the air-conditional facility. We have successfully applied for four grants and submitted four manuscripts to the top journals of herpetology, behavior and acoustics fields. 

We are interested in: 1) sound communication, mating recognition and their relations to hormones in frogs; technologies for auto processing, analyzing and extracting of animal voice signals; coding and processing of acoustic properties of calls in brains or networks; 2) synactic action of infrared and visual systems in attack behavior of pit viper snakes; cognizing infrared stimuli as well as infrared imaging in the snakes; neuronal responses to varied infrared stimuli by extracellular recording and real time imaging techniques; 3) neuroendocrine mechanisms for brumation-dependent reproductive startup in snakes; dynamics of hormones, genes and proteomics during and after brumation in the pituitary and gonad; and 4) reptilian models of the auditory brainstem and the midbrain. 

Four manuscripts have been submitted as follows.

Qin Chen, Jianguo Cui, Yezhong Tang. “Musical” Quality, Pitch Increment and Acoustic Change in Advertisement Calls of Music Frog (Babina daunchina). Ethology.

Xiaodong Yu, Yuan Peng, Anchalee Aowphol, Li Ding, Yezhong Tang. Geographic variations in advertisement calls and morphological aspects of the Gekko gecko species complex. Copeia.

Elizabeth Brittan-Powell, Jakob Christensen-Dalsgaard, Yezhong Tang, Catherine Carr, and Robert Dooling. The Auditory Brainstem Response in Lizards. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America.

Yusheng Wang, Jianguo Cui, Yezhong Tang, Xiaodong Yu. Male’s phonotropism and answer call in response to female’s vocalizations in African clawed frogs, Xenopus laevis. Journal of Herpetology. 

Lab members:

Dr. Tang, Yezhong, Professor, Principal Investigator, obtained Ph.D. from Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Office phone: (86)-28-8521-9368; Email:



Dr. Cui, Jianguo, Assistant Professor, graduated from Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, focusing on sound communication in frogs.

Mobile: 13982148500; Email:



Dr. Ding, Li, post doctor, graduated from Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, studying reproductive behaviors and endocrinology of snakes.

Mobile: 13730840471; Email:

Ms. Xu, Jing, lab manager, graduated from Huazhong Agricultural University, studying the reptilian auditory brainstem and the midbrain.

Mobile: 13408469200; Email:

Chen, Qin, Ph.D. student, graduated from Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, focusing on behaviors and electrophysiology related to infrared perception in snakes.


Song, Jin, Ph.D. student, graduated from Dalian Fishery University, investigating neuroendocrine mechanisms for call perception in frogs.


Wang, Yusheng, master degree student. Email:

Song, Xiaowei, master degree student. Email:

Deng, Huanhuan, master degree student. Email:

  Xu, Fei, master degree student. Email: