Neural basis of behavior
Mechanistic dissection of the circuits and cellular underpinnings of sensation and behavior.
Our faculty use cutting edge techniques such as optogenetics and advanced imaging methods to understand how neural circuits process information and mediate complex behaviors. A variety of model organisms and behaviors are utilized, ranging from zebrafish to rodents.
Faculty: Stefano Brigidi; Adam Douglass; Chris Gregg; Jim Heys; Andres Villu Maricq; Scott W. Rogers; Matt Wachowiak; Moriel Zelikowsky
Molecular signaling and development
The department builds on its historic strength in developmental biology with diverse faculty working to uncover the molecular mechanisms of nervous system wiring and signaling pathways involved in embryogenesis and organ development.
Faculty: Maureen L. Condic; Jan L. Christian; Michael Deans; Richard I. Dorsky; David Hutcheson; Kathryn B. Moore; Sungjin Park; Alex Shcheglovitov; Monica Vetter; Joseph Yost
Synapses and circuits
Cellular and molecular mechanisms of synapse formation and function.
Synaptic transmission and plasticity are approached from molecules to in vivo circuits to understand information encoding and storage in the brain. Faculty interests include how synapses form in defined neural circuits and how experience shapes these synaptic circuits.
Faculty: Stefano Brigidi; Jim Heys; Andres Villu Maricq; Sungjin Park; Alex Shcheglovitov; Jason Shepherd; Matt Wachowiak; Megan Williams; Moriel Zelikowsky
Mechanisms of disease
Understanding the pathogenesis of neurological and genetic disorders.
Basic biology informs how diseases arise from molecular and cellular processes gone awry. Our faculty investigates a multitude of disorders that include autism spectrum disorders, retinal diseases, addiction and neurodegeneration.
Faculty: Alejandra Bosco; Noel G. Carlson; Chris Gregg; Andres Villu Maricq; Scott W. Rogers; Alex Shcheglovitov; Jason Shepherd; Dimitri Trankner; Megan Williams; Joseph Yost; Moriel Zelikowsky
Genes and epigenetics
Investigating the genetic program that underlies behavior, neural development and embryogenesis.
Our faculty draws on the strengths of the genetics research at Utah to understand the gene program that underlies behavior and development. New approaches to investigate the role of epigenetic modifications in these processes are also studied.
Faculty: Stefano Brigidi; Michael Deans; Richard I. Dorsky; Chris Gregg; Alex Shcheglovitov; Dimitri Trankner; Monica Vetter