Former Post-baccalaureate IRTA Fellow, Neuronal Networks Section
ContactBiomedical Research Center
251 Bayview Boulevard
Suite 200, Room 08A705
Baltimore, MD 21224
M.S. – Bioengineering – Technische Universität München (TUM) – Expected 2023
B.S. – Chemistry – University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)
We know that the ventral tegmental Area (VTA) plays an essential role in both positive and negative reinforcement behavior and that the parabrachial nucleus (PBN) is involved in aversion. It has also been shown that the PBN projects to the VTA but how these connections play a role in reinforcement and aversion processes is unclear. Therefore, my current project involves using optogenetics, chemogenetics, and calcium imaging to define the role of this PBN-to-VTA pathway in aversion.
I’m interested in using the properties of light to image neurons. Specifically, by using calcium imaging with fiber photometry or two photon spectroscopy during behavior, I aim to characterize neuronal activity in the context of behavior. Combining my computation background in mass data analysis with the skills I have acquired at NIDA, in the future, I intend to investigate neuronal properties in songbirds, as model of vocal learning, after social defeat as a model of stress.