courtne6@illinois.edu

515 Medical Sciences Building

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Connor Courtney

Modulation of synaptic inhibition via neuropeptides and astrocytes

My research currently consists of two areas:

1) The neuropeptide diazepam binding inhibitor (DBI) is an endogenous ligand named for its high affinity for benzodiazepine binding sites on GABA receptors. Using whole-cell patch clamp electrophysiology and a recently developed DBI knockout mouse, we seek to investigate the role of DBI endozepines on both neural function and behavior.

2) Very little is currently known about the role of astrocytes in modulating GABAergic transmission. Using unique combinations of electrophysiological, UV laser uncaging, optogenetic, and chemogenetic (DREADDs) methods, we hope to uncover the potential intracellular signaling pathways in astrocytes that control the extracellular release of factors that modulate synaptic inhibition.

Research Areas

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