The overall goal is to understand the neurochemical basis for ethanol drinking behavior. Since the brain controls behavior, and neurons are the basic functional unit of the brain, it follows that neuronal activity underlies ethanol drinking behavior. Neuronal activity is controlled in part by the chemical microenvironment, so a major objective of the lab is to characterize the chemical changes in the brain that may underlie alcohol drinking. The research entails a combination of behavioral and chemical techniques.
Current interests include the effects of ethanol on basic dopaminergic neuronal activity in vivo, and the involvement of dopamine in ethanol self-administration behavior. Other interests include the physical characterization and theoretical description of diffusion behavior of solutes during in vivo microdialysis. Two new projects have been undertaken in the lab in the last few years. We have begun development of microdialysis for opioid peptides. This new analytical technique will enable analysis of larger messenger molecules and their roles in ethanol-related behaviors. Secondly, we are exploring new models of ethanol self-administration to better investigate the transition from controlled to uncontrolled ethanol self-administration.More information about Dr. Gonzales
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Pharmacology & Toxicology
College of Pharmacy
The University of Texas
107 W. Dean Keeton
Austin, TX, USA
Email Address: pharmtox
Dr. Som Mukhopad-
hyay led the research team that focused on the gene SLC30A10 and its role as a "door opener" in helping to remove elevated levels of manganese from cells. The study was published in the Oct. 15, 2014 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.
"Drugs, the Brain and Behavior" is co-authored by Dr. Carlton Erickson, the college's associate dean for research and graduate studies, and Dr. John Brick, executive director of Intoxikon International.
Andrea Gore is named to the SEBM Distinguished Scientist Award.