Research

To oscillate is normal. We focus on the roles of specific molecules, cells and circuits in scheduling daily changes in physiology and behavior.  We study this in mice, humans and computational models.

Current Projects Include:

  1. How do the MOLECULES of the circadian clock regulate excitability?  We focus on the roles of specific potassium channels.
  2. Which CELLS in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) and olfactory bulbs (OB) are responsible for circadian pacemaking?  We focus on classes of neurons and glia.
  3. What are the patterns and mechanisms of CELL-CELL COMMUNICATION that coordinate their activities and drive behavior? We map connections and test the roles of neurotransmitters, gap junctions, and neuropeptides.
  4. How do they relate to HEALTH disorders including brain cancer, pre-term birth, manic depression and channelopathies

We study the circadian properties of cells in isolation, in small networks, and in different brain and body tissues in vivo and in vitro. By combining behavioral assays, cell culture, biochemistry, electrophysiology, and molecular biology, we examine the intracellular and intercellular processes that are involved in rhythm generation, synchronization to the environment, synchronization among oscillators and rhythmic output.

WUSTL Biology     Neuroscience     ENDURE    Brain Bee