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Faculty Research Talk:  Professor Kristin Scaplen

Faculty Research Talk: Professor Kristin Scaplen Online

Neural Circuitry Mechanisms Underlying Alcohol Addiction: Contributions from Drosophila

Alcohol addiction constitutes one of the most serious public health problems worldwide. Despite its devastating impact, there are few effective treatments. Circuit based approaches to treat addiction provide a powerful opportunity to develop more specific and effective treatments. However, circuit complexity has made it difficult to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms by which memory circuits are altered to create enduring preferences for alcohol. Drosophila melanogaster, or fruit flies, are a powerful model for investigating the neural circuitry changes in the context of alcohol because they model many of the core behavioral elements of alcohol addiction and offer a rich genetic toolkit to precisely reveal the underlying circuitry changes. In this seminar, I will discuss, how I’ve capitalized on the precise genetic tools available in the fruit fly, to identify memory circuits important for alcohol reward and how I will use a combination of strategies to manipulate these circuits and capture the precise changes that occur while flies learn that alcohol intoxication is rewarding. Ultimately, understanding general circuitry principles described first in Drosophila will provide insight to how alcohol co-opts mammalian circuits to create enduring preference for alcohol and drive maladaptive choice.

Thursday, April 8, 2021
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Time Zone:
Eastern Time - US & Canada (change)
Bryant University
This is an online event. Event URL will be sent via registration email.
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Event Organizer

Profile photo of Ed Kairiss
Ed Kairiss

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