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Research Focus

Welcome to the McReynolds Lab Webpage!

Our lab studies how stress facilitates or exacerbates pathological brain states and behavior, such as substance use disorder. While acute, mild stress can be beneficial for cognition and behavior, traumatic and chronic stress have deleterious effects and influence the development or severity of many neuropsychiatric disorders. This is why our lab is focused on understanding how stress can increase vulnerability in the development or severity of substance use disorders using rodent pre-clinical models of drug self-administration. We are interested in understanding how repeated stress can drive drug use and increase susceptibility for drug-seeking behavior in abstinent animals. We are focusing on the circuit-specific cellular and synaptic mechanisms that underlie this influence of stress on addiction-related behaviors. We investigate these research questions on multiple levels using complex behavioral models, such as drug self-administration, viral-mediated chemogenetic approaches, pharmacological manipulations, molecular and biochemical techniques, and neuroimaging of in vivo calcium and neurotransmitter biosensors using fiber photometry.

The McReynolds Lab is committed to maintaining and promoting a diverse and inclusive environment and is an advocate of positive mental health.

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Department of
Pharmacology and Systems Physiology

College of Medicine
231 Albert Sabin Way
Cincinnati, OH 45267-0575