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Indiana University Bloomington

Preston Garraghty

Dr. Preston Garraghty

Professor

 

pgarragh [at] indiana.edu | personal website

office: PY 320 | (812)855-9679

lab: PY A412 | (812)855-6722

 

Electrophysiological, neuroanatomical, and neurochemical analyses of adult neural plasticity in cortical and subcortical structures, particularly with respect to the contributions of gonadal and stress hormones; Neuroanatomical, neurochemical, and behavioral analyses of animal models of autism; Secondary interests include sensory system development and comparative neuroanatomy

Educational Background

1974 - B.A. Psychology, University of North Carolina-Greensboro
1976 - M.Ed. Educational Research and Evaluation, University of North Carolina-Greensboro
1978 - M.A. Physiological Psychology, University of North Carolina-Greensboro
1983 - Ph.D. Physiological Psychology, University of North Carolina-Greensboro
1983-1986- Postdoctoral Fellow, Yale University School of Medicine, Section of Neuroanatomy
1986-1993 - Guest Researcher, National Institutes of Health Laboratory of Neuropsychology
1986-1987 - Postdoctoral Fellow/Associate, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences

Areas of Study

  • Biology, Behavior, and Neuroscience
  • Neural Science
  • Cognitive Science
  • Animal Behavior

Research Topics

    Electrophysiological, neuroanatomical, and neurochemical analyses of adult neural plasticity in cortical and subcortical structures, particularly with respect to the contributions of gonadal and stress hormones; Neuroanatomical, neurochemical, and behavioral analyses of animal models of autism; Secondary interests include sensory system development and comparative neuroanatomy.

Research Summary:

My laboratory features two ongoing lines of research. The primary focus is on plastic changes in the adult primate somatosensory system following peripheral nerve injury. It has been known for nearly two decades that the adult primate somatosensory cortex can undergo a topographic reorganization after transection of one or more of the nerves innervating the hand. We wish to understand the mechanism(s) by which such changes are effected. To accomplish that, we: 1) conduct electrophysiological mapping experiments in the somatosensory cortex, thalamus, and brainstem; 2) assess the neurochemical substrates of the plastic changes using specific receptor antagonists, immunocytochemistry, receptor autoradiography, and in vivo microdialysis with high-performance liquid chromatography; 3) investigate possible morphological changes in somatosensory neurons by reconstructing Golgi-stained neurons; and 4) employ gene and protein assays to reveal the molecular mechanisms of this plasticity. More recently initiated experiments are beginning to investigate the contributions of gonadal and stress hormones to somatosensory plasticity in adult rats.

The second line of research involves assessment of the effects of anticonvulsant compounds, gonadal and stress hormones, or specific neurotransmitter systems, principally using an instrumental appetitive-to-aversive transfer task or a Pavlovian discrimination reversal paradigm, as well as Morris water maze, and spatial working memory tasks. For these experiments, anticonvulsants are delivered to normal adult rats, to adult females throughout pregnancy and nursing with the offspring tested as adults, or transiently to adolescent rats who are then tested as adults. Hormonal manipulations involve gonadectomy in infancy or adulthood, or chronic restraint stress. Specific neurochemical manipulations investigated thus far include cholinergic depletion and NMDA glutamatergic receptor blockade. Associated experiments involve Golgi morphometric studies in targeted brain structures of rats at critical times during the instrumental appetitive-to-aversive transfer task. These experiments relate to the primate somatosensory plasticity studies insofar as critical neurochemical, anatomical, and hormonal mechanisms of injury- and experience-induced plasticity and development are shared.

Representative Publications

2004 - Goodman, M.R., E.E. Garman, L.L. Arnold, D.R. Sengelaub, and P.E. Garraghty. The effects of estradiol on avoidance learning in ovariectomized adult rats. Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science, in press.

2003 - Garraghty, P.E.. Mechanisms of synaptic plasticity. In: L. Nadel (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science, Vol. 2, Nature Publishing Group, London, pp. 307-311.

2003 - Garraghty, P.E.. Discovery of long-term potentiation. In: L. Nadel (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science, Vol. 2, Nature Publishing Group, London, pp. 961-965.

2003 - Butt, A.E., J.A. Schultz, L.L. Arnold, E.E. Garman, C.L. George, and P.E. Garraghty. Lesions of the rat nucleus basalis magnocellularis disrupt appetitive-to-aversive transfer learning. Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science, 38: 253-271.

2003 - Churchill, J.D., P.-C. Fang, S.E. Voss, J. Besheer, A.H. Herron, and P.E. Garraghty. The effects in rats of several antiepileptic compounds on learning in the Morris water maze. Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science, 38: 91-103.

2003 - Fu, K.-M.G., T.A. Johnston, A.S. Shah, L. Arnold, J. Smiley, T.A. Hackett, P.E. Garraghty, and C.E. Schroeder. Auditory cortical neurons respond to somatosensory stimulation. Journal of Neuroscience, 23: 7510-7515.

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