Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Building
12850 East Montview Boulevard
Third Floor Room 3121
Aurora, CO 80045
The overall goal of my research is to establish functional roles for specialized GABAergic inhibitory circuits in synaptic plasticity, the plasticity of the neuropathological process of disease and sensory circuit formation. I utilize animal models of disease and human epileptic tissue in order to determine a synaptic basis for brain dysfunction stemming from faulty inhibitory circuits. Inhibitory interneurons are a diverse population of brain cells that control the synchronization of excitatory networks. Defective inhibitory control of excitatory neuron populations result in what can be collectively categorized as “synchronization disorders” such as: epilepsy, Fragile X Syndrome (an autism spectrum disorder) and schizophrenia. My studies seek to reveal new, fundamental roles of inhibition by the identification of cell-type-specific inhibitory circuits in the brain and how these circuits change in response to changes in activity. Taken together these data implicate inhibition in mechanisms of plasticity in the re-organization of sensory maps and reveal circuit rearrangements underlying hyperexcitable states in neurodevelopmental disorders.