- Our research focuses on neural circuits that facilitate different forms of learning and cognition using rodents as a model system.
- We are particularly interested in the interactions between different brain regions within the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system (i.e.; prefrontal cortex, ventral striatum, amygdala, hippocampus, thalamus) that facilitate cognitive processes, such as behavioural flexibility, cost/benefit decision making and reward-related learning.
- Our laboratory uses a multidisciplinary approach, combining behavioural and psychopharmacological assays, along with neurophysiological recordings in both anesthetized and awake preparations.
- We are also interested in modeling dysfunction in these brain circuits and corresponding impairments in different forms of cognition associated with different diseases, such as stimulant addiction, schizophrenia and depression. Our approach here is to understand how the normal brain solves these types of problems, and then assess how certain manipulations that model these diseases can alter both neural activity and behaviour mediated by these circuits.
And we like to have a good time doing it…