Josh Kaplan

I grew up in Deerfield, Illinois before attending Colorado College for my undergraduate education. There, I fell in love with the brain and the outdoors. Since it was promised that I’d be able to continue my affair with neuroscience and the mountains at OHSU, I made my way to Portland and entered The Department of Behavioral Neuroscience in 2009. My research interest is to compare how alcohol differentially acts in the brains of individuals with opposite levels of genetic risk for becoming alcohol dependent. To investigate alcohol’s actions, I use electrophysiological techniques which allow me to measure the response to alcohol in individual neurons that may be involved in alcohol consumption. When I can escape the lab, I can usually be found running around the streets of Portland, the mountains of Forest Park, or in the Columbia Gorge. There’s no other place I can think of where you can dive into an extensive trail system in between experiments.

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Ever wondered what life is like as a student at OHSU? What does it take to become a researcher? Just how gross is gross anatomy? Welcome to the blog that answers these – and many other – questions. It’s students writing first-hand about their commitment to careers in science and health care. It’s honest about the challenges as well as the joys. It’s not always pretty. But it is our story. Thank you for sharing it with us. And please, let us know what you think.

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