University of Pittsburgh

Department of Neuroscience

Current News, Events and Seminars

2010 Events and Seminars

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

Pierre Paoletti , PhD

Biology Institute, Ecole Normale Superieure, Paris, France

November 9, 2010

Tuesday, 10:00 am

2nd floor, LRDC

Title: Control of NMDA Receptor Activity: From Molecular Mechanisms to Synaptic Modulation
Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

PhD Disseratation Defense: Beth A. Siegler Retchless:

November 8, 2010

Monday, 12:00 noon

A219B Langley Hall

Title: Mechanistic bases of subtype-specific NMDA receptor channel properties

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

Lauren Zammerilla - Homecoming Queen

Seniors Lauren Zammerilla and Jamil Alhassan were crowned the Homecoming queen and king by Chancellor Mark Nordenberg during halftime at the Pitt-Louisville football game on Saturday, October 30, 2010.

Lauren is Neuroscience major who has maintained a 4.0 QPA throughout her undergraduate education. After graduation Lauren will be attending The University of Pittsburgh Medical School to train as a pediatric surgeon.



Department of Neuroscience Seminar: Kristin L. Bigos, PhD

The National Institute of Mental Health, NIH

October 14, 2010

Thursday, 4:00 pm

A219B Langley Hall

Title: Psychiatric Genetics: From Gene to Brain
Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

Science 2010: Life Sciences Supplier Show

October 6, 2010

Wednesday, 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Petersen Events Center, Concourse Level

Science 2010: Opening Reception and Technology Showcase

October 6, 2010

Wednesday, 3:00 - 5:00 pm

Alumni Hall, Connolly Ballroom

Science 2010: Career Development Symposium

October 6, 2010

Wednesday, 3:00 - 5:00 pm

Alumni Hall, 7th Floor Lobby

Science 2010: Seminars

October 6 and 7, 2010

Thursday and Friday

Anthony A. Grace Named Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience at Pitt

The Department of Neuroscience is pleased to announce that Chancellor Mark Nordenberg, on the recommendation of Dean N. John Cooper of the School of Arts and Sciences and Provost James V. Maher, has appointed Dr. Anthony A. Grace to the special faculty rank of Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience effective September 1, 2010.

As reported in the September 30th edition of the University Times and the September 20th edition of The Pitt Chronicle, "the rank of Distinguished Professor recognizes extraordinary, internationally recognized scholarly attainment in an individual discipline or field".

24th Annual CNUP Retreat

September 10 through 12, 2010

Oglebay Resort and Conference Center, WV

PhD Dissertation Defense: Trinity Crapse

September 23, 2010

Thursday, 1:00 pm

A219B Langley Hall

Title: TBD

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

Department of Neuroscience Seminar: Richard Krauzlis, PhD

The Salk Institute of Biological Studies, CA

September 24 , 2010

Friday, 10:00 am

A219 Langley Hall

Title: Priority Map for Action and Perception in the Primate Superior Colliculus

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

Department of Neuroscience Seminar: Philip Winn, PhD

University of Strathclyde, Scotland

September 21 , 2010

Tuesday, 4:00 pm

A219 Langley Hall

Title: Putting the Brain into Brainstem: The Pedunculopontine, Learning and Reinforcement

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

PhD Dissertation Defense: Ericka Holmstrand

September 21, 2010

Tuesday, 9:00 am

2nd Floor Auditorium, LRDC

Title: Heterogeneity of high-affinity choline transporter expression and localization in limbic projections of the cholinergic brainstem tegmentum

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

Dr. Grace Appointed as Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience

The Department of Neuroscience is pleased to announce that Chancellor Mark Nordenberg, on the recommendation of Dean N. John Cooper of the School of Arts and Sciences and Provost James V. Maher, has appointed Dr. Anthony A. Grace to the special faculty rank of Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience effective September 1, 2010.

The appointment to a distinguished professorship "constitutes the highest honor that the University can accord a member of the professoriate" for "extraordinary, internationally-recognized scholarly attainment".

Translational Neuroscience Program Seminar: Bita Moghaddam, PhD

Professor, School of Arts and Sciences

June 7 , 2010

Monday, Noon - 1:00 pm

16th Floor Conference Room (1695)

Biomedical Science Tower

Title: A Dynamic Synapse Hypothesis of Schizophrenia

Sponsor: Translational Neuroscience Program and the Department of Psychiatry

MS Thesis Defense: Jennifer Joeyen-Waldorf

April 19, 2010

Monday, 2:30 pm

1295 Biomedical Science Tower

School of Arts and Sciences

Title: Behavioral and Molecular Correlates of Major Depression in Mice Lacking the Serotonin Transporter

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

MS Thesis Defense: Andrea Ponting

April 14, 2010

Wednesday, 10:00 am

9th Floor Auditorium, LRDC

School of Arts and Sciences

Title: The basal ganglia and training of arithmetical fluency

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

PhD Dissertation Defense: Layla Banihashemi

April 8, 2010

Thursday, 9:00 am

A219B Langley Hall

Title: Early Life Experience Alters Stress-Related Brain Circuits: Effects of Repeated Brief Postnatal Maternal Separation on Central Autonomic Pathways

Sponsor: School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Neuroscience

Pitt Student Nicholas R. DeStefino is Awarded Goldwater Scholarship

Congratulations to Nick DeStefino!

As reported in the PittChronicle, April 5, 2010, Nicholas R. DeStefino, a junior majoring in neuroscience and history, has been awarded a prestigious 2010 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship winner for exceptional independent research.

"Since his freshman year, DeStefino has worked in Pitt professor Stephen Meriney's laboratory in the Department of Neuroscience. Work in that lab includes extensive study of various aspects of calcium channel functioning and presynaptic mechanisms of transmitter release at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ) and how structure-function relationships are distrupted by neuromuscular disease".

This latest honor adds to a lengthy list of honors, awards and fellowships for Nick who is president of the Neuroscience Club and the Alpha Epsilon Delta society.

Find the complete article here.

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

March 24, 2010

Wednesday, 11:00 a.m.

A19B Langley Hall

Long Ding , PhD

Department of Neuroscience

University of Pennsylvania

Seminar Title: The Cortico-Basal Ganglia Pathway and Perceptual Decision Making

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

March 10, 2010

Wednesday, 9:30 a.m.

A19B Langley Hall

Kazuhito Toyo-oka, PhD

Department of Pediatrics

School of Medicine

University of California

Seminar Title: Dissecting the functions of 14-3-3 proteins in the developing brain and their roles in human diseases

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

March 1, 2010

Monday, 9:30 a.m.

A221 Langley Hall

Yangzhong Huang, MD, PhD

Department of Neurobiology

Duke University Medical Center

Seminar Title: A Novel Mechanism of TrkB Activation: Transactivation by the Divalent Cation Zinc

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

University of Pittsburgh's 34th Annual Honors Convocation

February 26, 2010

Friday, 3:00 p.m.

Carnegie Music Hall

4400 Forbes Avenue

An open invitation to the University community and the public to join the celebration as Pitt students, faculty, alumni and staff are recognized for their outstanding achievements and their contributions to the rich quality of life on campus and in the surrounding community.

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

February 24, 2010

Wednesday, 10:00 a.m.

A219B Langley Hall

Marlene R. Cohen, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Harvard Medical School, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Seminar Title: Using Attention to Study Cortical Population Codes

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

As reported by Morgan Kelly in NewsfromPitt, February 22, 2010

"Pitt Researchers Report Internal and Environmental Factors Trigger Unique Brain Activity in Teens, Is Key Step in Understanding Causes of Teen Behavior."

Dr. Bita Moghaddam's research group, with David Sturman, as the lead author, have had their findings reported in the current edition of Behavioral Neuroscience. The study, sponsored by the National Institute of Health, demonstrates that some adolesecent behavioral differences reflect a greater sensitivity to internal and external motivating factors. This work is a significant step in characterizing the unique proclivities of adolescents, which may help us understand the teenage tendencies toward risk-taking and other neuropsychiatric vulnerabilities. Moghaddam's group is now examining the neural underpinnings of such age-related differences.

Among others, WDUQ-FM, the United Press International, Pop City and Medical News Today have also published this report.

Translational Neuroscience Program and Department of Psychiatry Seminar:

February 22, 2010

Monday, 12:00 noon

1695 Biomedical Science Tower

Susan Sesack, PhD
Department of Neuroscience
University of Pittsburgh

Seminar Title: A newly identified brain region with extensive inhibitory inputs to dopamine neurons – Implications for disorders of reward processing
Sponsor: Translational Neuroscience Program and Department of Psychiatry

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

February 22, 2010

Monday, 9:30 a.m.

A221 Langley Hall

Gareth M. Thomas, PhD

Department of Neuroscience and Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Seminar Title: Regulation of Glutamatergic Synapses in Health and Disease

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

February 17, 2010

Wednesday, 10:00 a.m.

A219B Langley Hall

Rebecca A. Berman, PhD

Research Fellow, Laboratory of Sensorimotor Research

National Eye Institute

National Institutes of Health

Seminar Title: Pathways to Perception: Interactions between the Visual Thalamus and Cortex

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

The American Physiological Society Election Results

Congratulations to Dr. Alan F. Sved! The American Physiological Society announced election results in their February 15, 2010 newsletter and Dr. Sved was elected Councillor for the Society.

 

 

PhD Dissertation Defense: Kate Cosgrove

February 10, 2010

Wednesday, 9:00 am

A219B Langley Hall

CNUP PhD Defense, School of Arts and Sciences

Title: High Affinity Group III mGluRs regulate mossy fiber input to CA3 interneurons

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

February 9, 2010

Tuesday, 4:00 p.m.

A219B Langley Hall

Jean-Claude Lacaille, PhD

Professor, Department of Physiology

University of Montreal

Seminar Title: Persistent Plasticity of Inhibition in Brain Memory Circuits

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

More Info »

Chancellor Nordenberg Announces 2010 Distinguished Teaching and Public Service Awards

As published in the Pitt Chronicle, February 8, 2010 edition and the University Times, February 18, 2010 edition, Dr. Bill J. Yates, is one of five Pitt instructors to be recognized by the University for distinguished teaching.

Dr. Yates is a professor otolaryngology in the School of Medicine and neuroscience in the School of Arts and Sciences.

The Chancellor wrote, "this honor recognizes your dedication to undergraduate research, your sustained commitment as a mentor to your students, and your progressive teaching style." Dr. Yates' Honors Human Physiology course, taught each fall, is very highly regarded by the students.

In honoring Dr. Yates, Chancellor Nordenberg noted that Dr. Yates "works with an average of seven undergraduate students a term in his lab; he has coauthored journal articles with 34 undergraduate students and awarded one of his students the privlege and responsibility of lead authorship."

Awardees of the prestigious Distinguished Teaching award, who will be recognized during Pitt's 34th annual Honors Convocation on Friday, February 26, 2010, will receive a $2,000 cash prize and a $3,000 grant for support of their teaching.

We join the Chancellor in congratulating Dr. Yates for his contributions to excellence in teaching!

The full articles are found here: Pitt Chronicle and University Times.

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

February 3, 2010

Wednesday, 10:00 a.m.

328 Mellon Institute

Benjamin Y. Hayden, PhD

Department of Neurobiology

Duke University

Seminar Title: Monitoring Outcomes and the Role of the Cingulate Cortex in Risky Choice

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

More Info »

Department of Neuroscience Seminar:

January 27, 2010

Wednesday, 10:00 a.m.

A219B Langley Hall

Matthew A. Smith , PhD

Department of Neuroscience and Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition

University of Pittsburgh & Carnegie Mellon University

Seminar Title: Deriving Functional Circuitry from Cortical Population Activity

Sponsor: Department of Neuroscience

More Info »

Deanne Buffalari transfers an NIH National Research Service Award to Pitt - January 15, 2010

Dr. Deanne Buffalari, a postdoc researcher, recently joined Dr. Linda Rinaman's lab, and brought with her an NRSA grant, Beta-Noradrenergic Receptor Blockage of Cocaine Withdrawal-induced Anxiety, effective January 15, 2010.

Grant awarded to Dr. Georgina Cano - January 1, 2010

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Georgina Cano, a Research Assistant Professor in the Department, has been awarded a grant from the Hope for Depression Research Foundation entitled Neurobiological Substrates Underlying the Relationship Between Insomnia and Depression , effective January 1, 2010 - December 31, 2010.