Neurobiology of motivated behavior

 

Our research focuses on the neural circuits that control reward-seeking actions (positive reinforcement) as well as the avoidance of aversive outcomes (negative reinforcement). The lab employs a diverse array of experimental techniques, including fast-scan cyclic voltammetry, optogenetics, chemogenetics, and fiber photometry. We are particularly interested in how the mesolimbic dopamine system governs actions in a regionally and temporally defined manner. Our goal is to identify and reverse neural adaptations underlying aberrant motivational processes in models of psychiatric disorders.