Novel Paradigms of Hippocampal Neuromodulation
Research in our laboratory broadly focuses on understanding neuromodulation within specific neural circuits, how it guides their development and function, and how it goes awry in disease. Hippocampal dentate gyrus is one of the two mammalian brain regions that produce large numbers of new neurons throughout life in mammals. Adult-born neurons are critically important for hippocampal function and behavior, forming a core feature of the granule cell dentate gyrus circuit. Our current goal is to reveal how serotonergic neuromodulation operates within hippocampal circuits of varying ontogenetic composition. To study neuromodulation we use and develop optical tools for functional and structural interrogation of genetically controlled synapses, neurons, and cell ensembles, complementing our analyses with physiological, anatomical and behavioral assays.