Cagla Eroglu, PhD
Professor & Principal Investigator

Cagla Eroglu Cagla completed her undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering and Master of Science degree in Molecular Biology and Genetics in her hometown, Ankara, Turkey. Then she moved to European Molecular Biology Laboratories in Heidelberg, Germanyfor her PhD. In her Ph.D., Cagla investigated the structure function relationship of metabotropic glutamate receptors which are G-protein coupled receptors. She found that these receptors directly interact with sterols within the membrane and these lipid-protein interactions regulate the affinity of mGluRs for glutamate. For her postdoctoral studies, Cagla moved across the globe and joined the lab of Dr. Ben Barres at Stanford. There she studied how astrocyte-secreted Thrombospondins promote formation of excitatory synapses via interacting with the gabapentin receptor Cacna2d-1. In 2008, Cagla started her lab in Duke University Cell Biology department. The Eroglu lab investigates how astrocytes, and other glial cells, control the formation, maturation and refinement of synaptic circuits. Besides all things astrocytes, Cagla is also passionate about mentoring and is often referred to as the “mother of astrocytes’ by her mentees. In addition to her scientific family, Cagla is married and has a teenage daughter. When she is not doing sciency things, Cagla loves traveling and spending time with her family and she is obsessed about growing rare fruits and vegetables from seed in her basement and her backyard. She is also a proud and non-apologetic Trekie!


Retinal dissections, Retinal Ganglion Cell isolation, synapse staining and quantification, experiment planning and troubleshooting, identifying killer experiments, playing the devil’s advocate