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Department Faculty

Joseph Steinmetz

Joseph E. Steinmetz

Current Research

My research interests center on how neurons in the brain change during learning and memory. My research is largely at the vertebrate systems level. That is, for the most part, I study how neurons and groups of neurons interact within specific areas of the brain to produce behavioral function and cognition. The cerebellum and hippocampus have been of particular interest to us. The techniques we use in my laboratory include chronic recording of single cell activity, infusions of pharmacological agents into discrete brain regions, and temporary inactivation of brain structures and systems in awake, behaving mammals. In a parallel line of work, we study basic brain function in humans using electrophysiology and brain imaging techniques. Over the years, we have been involved in parallel experiments involving humans and animal models to study a variety of clinical disorders such as autism, schizophrenia, fetal alcohol syndrome, and anxiety disorders. Graduate students and postdoctoral fellows who have worked in my laboratory usually have interests in basic vertebrate systems neuroscience and experimental psychology.