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Allen Lab

Evolution of the primate brain

PI: Kari Allen, PhD

The Allen Lab explores the evolution of brain size and skull shape in primates using medical imaging, phylogenetic comparative statistics, and three-dimensional morphometric methods. The purpose of this research is to determine the timing and order of acquisition of traits in brain and body size evolution and to use this information to evaluate various hypotheses concerning ecological pressures selecting for large brains and changes in brain proportions in humans and their closest relatives.

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Bagnall Lab

Spinal and brainstem circuits for movement

PI: Martha Bagnall, PhD

Posture is intimately dependent on signals from the inner ear, but we understand very little about how that information is mapped onto motor outputs. The Bagnall Lab studies how sensory information about orientation and movement drives appropriate body movements to adjust posture.

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Bauernfeind Lab

Primate neuroanatomical & molecular variation

PI: Amy Bauernfeind, PhD

The Bauernfeind Lab is interested in how the biology of the brain underlies a species' particular cognitive specializations and behavioral repertoire. The lab's research program investigates neuroanatomical and molecular variation in primates to address questions of evolutionary significance, particularly with regard to the unique cognitive abilities of humans.

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Bridgman Lab

Cell biology of developing nerves

PI: Paul Bridgman, PhD

The Bridgman Lab focuses on the basic cellular properties of developing nerve and muscle with emphasis on relating structure to function.

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Burkhalter Lab

Anatomical, physiological & optogenetic study of the visual cortex

PI: Andreas Burkhalter, PhD

An important question is whether the mouse visual cortex is similar to that of primates and contains multiple modularly organized areas that are linked to distinct processing streams. If so, another important question is how these modules, areas and processing streams work together to create a unified representation of the world that can be flexibly changed by internal representations of the world to optimally guide behavioral goals. To investigate these questions the Burkhalter Lab is employing a combination of anatomical, physiological and optogenetic techniques.

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Burton Lab

Cerebral cortex & sensory aberrations

PI: Harold Burton, PhD

Research in the Burton Lab explores possible reorganization in human cerebral cortex in the presence of sensory aberrations. Combined in these studies are functional brain imaging and behavioral assessments in individuals with some sensory deficit compared to age matched normal controls.

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Cavalli Lab

Neural repair mechanisms

PI: Valeria Cavalli, PhD

The primary goal of the Cavalli Lab is to unravel the molecular events that dictate the regenerative response of neurons in the peripheral nervous system and to relate this information to the lack of regenerative capacity in the central nervous system. The lab's proposed research has broad clinical impact, since axonal damage can occur in traumatic spinal cord injury, stroke, and many neurodegenerative diseases.

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Chen Lab

Neuromodulation, sleep & learning

PI: Yao Chen, PhD

The Chen Lab attempts to fill the gap between molecular neuroscience and animal behavior by elucidating the spatial and temporal dynamics of biological signals, because their dynamics carry critical information that explain subsequent modifications of cells, circuits, and behavior. Specifically, the lab aims to understand how the dynamics of neuromodulators and intracellular signals contribute to the function of neuromodulators, to learning, and to the function of sleep.

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Dikranian Lab

Neurodegeneration in the Central Nervous System

PI: Krikor Dikranian, MD, PhD

The Dikranian Lab studies neuronal and glial cell degeneration, traumatic brain injury and animal models of Alzheimer's disease, tauopathies and prion diseases.

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Fitzpatrick Lab

Center for Cellular Imaging

PI: James Fitzpatrick, PhD

The overarching goal of the Washington University Center for Cellular Imaging (WUCCI) is to provide reliable and affordable access to state-of-the-art cellular imaging technologies, provide professional guidance in experimental design, sample preparation and data analysis, develop and apply new imaging technologies and work collaboratively with WashU researchers to advance our understanding of human health and disease.