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CBBRe Research Symposium 2015

The goal of this annual symposium is to bring researchers together from the fields of neural and behavioral sciences, providing a forum of collegial interaction and collaboration.

Presentations include talks from invited speakers and poster presentations from USD CBBRe students and faculty. Students who have recently completed the Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Addiction (SPURA) at USD will also  present their work at the poster session.




2015 External Speakers

Lara Boyd, M.P.T., Ph.D.

Professor of Physical Therapy

University of British Columbia

Talk Title: "Neurophysiologic recovery from stroke: Can we predict who will respond?"

Dr. Boyd is the Canada Research Chair in Neurobiology of Motor Learning, a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Career Investigator, a Peter Wall Scholar and a Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of British Columbia.  She is a Neuroscientist and Physical Therapist. Boyd directs the Brain Behaviour Lab at the University of British Columbia, which performs research designed to advance theoretical conceptualizations of how brain function relates to behaviour during learning. She is also the Health Research Advisor to the VP Research and International at UBC and the UBC CIHR delegate.

Website: http://physicaltherapy.med.ubc.ca/person/lara-boyd/


Ronald Duman, Ph.D.

Professor of Psychiatry and Neurobiology

Yale University School of Medicine


Talk Title: "Neurobiology of stress, depression, and antidepressants: Remodeling synaptic connections"

 Dr. Duman is Professor of Psychiatry and Neurobiology, Director of the Abraham Ribicoff Research Facilities and the Jameson Professor of Psychiatry at Yale. Studies from Dr. Duman’s laboratory have contributed to characterization of the molecular and cellular actions of stress, depression, and antidepressant treatments, providing the basis for a neurotrophic and synaptic hypothesis of depression. He has also studied the role of the innate immune system in the pathophysiology and treatment of depression. These findings represent major advances in our understanding of the effects of antidepressants and provide a framework for the development of novel therapeutic agents.  Duman has received several awards for his work, including the Anna-Monika Prize, Nola Maddox Falcone Prize, Janssen Prize, NIMH MERIT Award and a NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Award. He is author of over 300 original articles, reviews and chapters and has given over 250 invited lectures. 

Website: http://psychiatry.yale.edu/people/ronald_duman-1.profile


Ken Mackie, M.D.

Linda and Jack Gill Professor of Neuroscience

Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Indiana University Bloomington

Talk Title: "Cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2) signaling in neurons and the consequences of CB2 receptor functional selectivity"

Dr. Mackie received his M.D. from Yale University, followed by postdoctoral studies with Paul Greengard and Bertil Hille.  He then completed his anesthesiology residency at the University of Washington.  While at the University of Washington he began studying ion channel modulation by CB1 cannabinoid receptors, showing these receptors inhibit presynaptic calcium channels and activate inwardly rectifying potassium channels.  His lab broadly studies cannabinoid biology, including pharmacology, signaling, regulation, and distribution of cannabinoid receptors, developmental effects of cannabinoids, and the interplay of endogenous and exogenous cannabinoids in synaptic plasticity.  In 2007 he moved to Indiana University where he is currently a Linda and Jack Gill Professor of Neuroscience. 

Website: http://psych.indiana.edu/faculty/kmackie.php


Mohammed Milad, Ph.D.

Professor of Psychiatry

Harvard University

Talk Title: "Fear extinction: 10 years of progress"

Dr. Milad is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and a Research Scientist at the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). He serves as the Director of the Behavioral Neuroscience Program within MGH where he conducts translational research focused on examining the neural correlates of fear extinction in rodents and humans using a multi-modal approach. Milad earned his Ph.D. in Behavioral Neuroscience and his post-doctoral training at MGH and HMS. He has received the Positive Neuroscience Award from the Templeton Foundation and was named a Kavli Fellow by the National Academy of Sciences. He served as an Institute of Medicine committee member, focusing on the improvement of treatment and diagnosis for PTSD.  Milad’s research has been supported by NIMH, DOD and NARSAD. 

Website: https://connects.catalyst.harvard.edu/profiles/display/person/14907

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CBBRe Speakers


Kathleen Brown-Rice, Ph.D

Assistant Professor

Department of Counseling and Psychology

University of South Dakota

Talk Title: "Neural correlates of historical trauma among Native American adults"

Dr. Rice is an Assistant Professor at the University of South Dakota. She received her Ph.D. in Counseling and Counselor Education from the University of North Carolina Charlotte and is a Licensed Professional Counselor (SD, NE, and NC), Licensed Mental Health Provider (NE), Certified Addiction Counselor (SD), Licensed Clinical Addiction Counselor (LCAS), Approved Clinical Supervisor and National Certified Counselor. Her research interests relate to professional counselor supervision and training with a focus on ethical and cross-cultural considerations, Native American mental health with an emphasis on the implications of historical/generational trauma, risky substance use and understanding emotional regulation through neural imaging. She has worked as a professional counselor in various clinical mental health settings and continues to practice part-time.

Taylor Bosch

Graduate Student

Ph.D. Program

Division of Basic Biomedical Sciences

Sanford School of Medicine

University of South Dakota

Talk Title: "Need a new vise? Alterations in neural activity following direct experience with unfamiliar tools"

Mr. Bosch is entering his third year of the Basic Biomedical Sciences doctoral program with a specialization in neuroscience at the University of South Dakota’s Sanford School of Medicine. He is an active member of the Center for Brain and Behavior Research (CBBRe) and is slated to present his research at the Society for Neuroscience annual conference. His research interests include using cognitive techniques such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and electroencephalography (EEG) to explain the intricacies of the human motor system, with an emphasis on the neurological correlates of tool use. Specifically, his research focuses on using action observation to identify changes in neural activity that occur following the acquisition of skilled tool use.

Indra Chandrasekar, Ph.D.

Associate Scientist

Sanford Children’s Health Research Center

Sanford Research

Talk Title: "Role of nonmuscle myosin II in CNS synapses"

Dr. Chandrasekar obtained her master’s degree from Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, India. Her passion for Cell Biology took her to cytoskeletal research pioneer, Dr. Brigitte M. Jockusch’s Lab in Germany, where she received training in basic cell biology concepts and techniques. After receiving her Ph.D. (Dr.rer.nat) degree from Technical University of Braunschweig in Germany, she moved to the U.S. Chandrasekar performed a short postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of renowned actin biologist, John Cooper, Ph.D. at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. After a baby break, she joined the lab of Paul Bridgman, Ph.D., an expert cellular neurobiologist and EM specialist at Washington University, where she received training in neuronal cytoskeleton, mouse models and advanced microscopy techniques. She is currently an Associate Scientist in the Children’s Health Research Center at Sanford Research. Her lab is interested in the role of membrane trafficking pathways in cell and organ function.

Melissa Prince

Undergraduate Student

Department of Biology

College of Arts and Sciences

University of South Dakota

Talk Title: "Behavioral nuance in a novel animal model reveals a gradient of anxiety"

Melissa Prince has been an Undergraduate Research Assistant in Cliff Summers’ lab for three years, with plans to enter into the USD Biology Department doctoral program to obtain her Ph.D. in Neuroscience. As a member of Summers’ lab, her research focuses on mechanisms that underlie decision making in the context of social stress and anxiety. Using social defeat in a recently developed model for mice, the Stress-Alternatives Model, her studies investigate the role of amygdalar orexin as a modulator of anxiety and depression. She is also a SPURA alumnus and mentor. She has presented her research at the Society for Neuroscience’s annual conference, and is co-author on a paper recently published in Physiology and Behavior.

Hongmin Wang, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Basic Biomedical Sciences

Sanford School of Medicine

University of South Dakota

Talk Title: "Induced pluripotent stem cells in studies of Huntington’s disease"

Dr. Wang received his Ph.D. from the University of Idaho in 2000, and completed his postdoctoral training at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Neurodegeneration. Wang is currently an Associate Professor within the Division of Basic Biomedical Sciences at the Sanford School of Medicine. His lab investigate the neuropathogenesis and neuroprotective mechanisms underlying Huntington’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and cerebral ischemic stroke. Specifically, he utilizes multiple approaches, including molecular biology, biochemistry, cell biology (including induced pluripotent stem cells, iPSCs), and mouse models, to (1) understand why neurodegeneration occurs in specific pathological conditions, (2) identify targets that can be “druggable” for treating the neurodegenerative disorders, and (3) develop therapeutic compounds that can be used for treating these disorders.

Michael Watt, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Basic Biomedical Sciences

Sanford School of Medicine

University of South Dakota

Talk Title: "Consequences of adolescent social stress on prefrontal cortex dopamine function and related behaviors"

Dr. Watt obtained his Ph.D. in Behavioral Endocrinology at Macquarie University in 2002 and is currently an Associate Professor in the Sanford School of Medicine. He has utilized a variety of invertebrate and vertebrate models to examine how differences in individual social responses relate to alterations in limbic monoaminergic activity and endocrine stress responses, and how this can be further differentiated by prior social experience. Currently, his NSF and NIH funded research uses a rat model to investigate mechanism underlying how social stress in adolescence negatively affects prefrontal cortex dopamine function and related behavior, and how this may be restored in adulthood.





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