Our team is interested in understanding alterations in the levels of neuromodulators such as dopamine, serotonin or norepinephrine in the brain. Changed levels of neuromodulation are linked not only to many psychiatric disorders, but also influence everyday cognitive performance: Fatigue, excitement and sadness e.g. are all correlated to activity patterns of neurons releasing such neuromodulators. While specific behaviors have been linked to specific neuromodulators, and while activation of certain receptors and their downstream signalling pathways have been associated with these neuromodulators, it still remains largely unknown how neuromodulatory neurons themselves function, how they adapt and how their global projections still allow for area-specificity.

These are complex questions involving numerous different brain structures. We are currently tackling them on various complexity levels: From molecules to neuronal circuits in cell culture all the way up to behaving mice. By combining designer photoreceptors with viral delivery strategies, we can control neuronal activity with light. Our working hypothesis is that these neuromodulatory systems form an overarching structure within local neuronal circuits and concert activity in various brain regions. How these neuromodulatory networks integrate information and how they adapt to environmental stressors or age are key questions of our research.

Plans underway for the 2nd LC imaging meeting. Excited to confirm it will be on the 12-13th of Dec at the @DZNE_en Magdeburg. Please contact myself or @d_haemmerer if you wish to join. Shaping up to be a cracking lineup! More details to follow... #locuscoeruleus

One of the first deliverables to come out of the Blue Spot locus coeruleus symposium is a Slack channel for the LC research community to share papers, meetings, ideas, etc. If you want to join send me an email at dweinsh@emory.edu Please RT!

Junior Group Leader position in Berlin Buch at the MDC. This position will be supported by the NeuroCure Cluster of Excellence. Wonderful opportunity - international environment and world-class infrastructure. #optogenetics #molecular #neuroscience https://t.co/E9qBQMpK4V

Just done with ERC StG interview 😅 whatever it will be - i learned a lot! And now...looking for a place to get a strong 🇧🇪 beer 🍺

very interesting beginning of new inhibitory opsin ... glückwunsch Arend

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