Neural Basis of Motivation
We are focused on understanding the neurochemical and neurophysiological basis of motivated behavior. Overeating densly caloric and highly rewarding foods contributes greatly to the development of obesity. Repeated exposure to and consumption of rewarding drugs can lead to abuse and addiction. The lab seeks to elucidate the role of the nucleus accumbens and associated circuitry in both adaptive (e.g. feeding) and maladaptive (e.g. overeating, drug-taking) motivated behaviors with the hope of identifying and rectifying aberrant signaling and behavior.