Professor Jon Horvitz Wins NIH Award
Neuroscience Collaborative Professor Jon Horvitz won the NIH High Priority, Short-Term Project Award for the 2015-2016 academic year. His research for this award is entitled "Does the Nucleus Accumbens Core Play Only a Transient Role in Conditioning Reward." We congratulate him and wish him luck on all future endeavors.
Dr. Horvitz on his work:
In addition, Jon Horvitz's textbook Essentials of Brain and Behavior, co-written with Barry Jacobs, is likely to be published later this year. Keep an eye out for his work.
By the time individuals enter a clinical setting for treatment of a dysfunctional habit - such as those directed toward food, gambling, drugs of abuse - the behavior has not only been acquired, but “overlearned”. Dopamine antagonist drugs reduce reward-directed behaviors but are not effective in treating drug-taking or other habits. Work in the Horvitz lab shows that brain (and particularly nucleus accumbens) dopamine is necessary for reward-directed behavior only during early stages of habit learning, and plays a diminishing role in performance of overlearned behavior. The work in this R56 combines central drug infusions and single-neuron recordings in rats to reveal neurobiological changes associated with performance of overlearned habits.
Submitted on: APR 13, 2016
Category: Biology | CUNY Neuroscience Collaborative | Psychology