Welcome to the Vollum Institute/OHSU Neuroscience Graduate Program

Founded in 1992, the Neuroscience Graduate Program at OHSU has 47 predoctoral students and more than 140 faculty in a broad range of subdisciplines. The program is intended for students planning a career in academic or industry research, but we encourage student to explore the career path that matches their ambitions and expertise. The program is particularly strong in cellular neuroscience, neuronal signaling, gene regulation, biophysics of channels and transporters, sensory systems, and neuroendocrinology with increasing strength in developmental neuroscience and disease-oriented neuroscience research. Faculty members are located within research institutes at OHSU including the Vollum Institute, the Oregon National Primate Research Center (ONPRC), Oregon Hearing Research Center, Jungers Center and the Oregon Institute for Occupational Health Sciences; as well as the basic and clinical departments in the OHSU School of Medicine.

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GardnerNGP Alumnus, Ryan Gardner, in the Habecker Lab, has authored a paper recently published in Nature Communications.  The paper, "Targeting protein tyrosine phosphatase after myocardial infarction restores cardiac sympathetic innervation and prevents arrhythmias," has implications for patients who survive a heart attack, and remain at risk for severe cardiac arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death.  Until now, we had always assumed that arrhythmias were mainly due to damage and death of heart cells. Our study is the first to suggest that treatments targeting nerve regeneration can normalize electrical activity and prevent arrhythmias in heart attack survivors. This exciting finding opens the door to an entirely new avenue of anti-arrhythmic therapy.

Tussell  Stefani

Congratulations to Drs. Larry Trussell and Stefanie Kaech-Petrie on their awards for Teaching Excellence in Graduate Education for the 2013-14 academic year.  These awards are particularly special as they are student initiated. Congratulations to you both!

mao_jeannie-hunnicutt_1NGP student, Jeannie Hunnicutt in the Mao Lab, has coauthored  a paper recently published in Nature Neuroscience.  "Using a combination of high-throughput imaging and computer reconstructions, the cortical targets of 254 thalamic tracer injections were mapped in the mouse brain. This provides in the first comprehensive map of thalamocortical projections in mouse, an invaluable tool for future studies investigating the functional properties of thalamocortical circuits."

IMG_264310849693267Congratulations to 2014 NGP Graduate, Pierre Apostolides, PhD on the 2014 John A. Resko PhD Dissertation Award for his thesis titled "Cellular and Network Mechanisms for Generating Inhibition in the Mouse Dorsal Cochlear Nucleus."  Dr. Apostolides (Trussell Lab) had just began his postdoctoral fellowship at Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Janelia Farm when he received the good news.  Congratulations, Pierre!

Gantz PhotoCongratulations to NGP student Stephanie Gantz on the 2014 Outstanding Journal Article by a Graduate Student Award.  Ms. Gantz's (Williams Lab) article titled "Spontaneous inhibitory synaptic currents mediated by a G protein-coupled receptoron" was published in Neuron  in June of 2013.  Stephanie will receive her award during the 2014 OHSU Research Week where she will have an opportunity (May 3rd, 4pm, OHSU Auditorium) to give a short presentation on her paper.  Congratulations, Stephanie!

Kateri head shotCongratulations to Kateri Spinelli, PhD, NGP alumnus, who was recently selected as a Society for Neuroscience Early Career Policy Fellow! During this one-year program, Kateri will continue doing research full time in her post-doctoral position at OHSU, but will also work to advocate locally and promote public dialogue around neuroscience research. The goal is for young scientists to become effective advocates for science, and SfN will provide tools and training to fellows to develop communication skills that enhance public engagement in neuroscience. All fellows will have the opportunity to attend SfN Capitol Hill Day in March, where they will interact with policy makers to convey the importance of funding neuroscience research. Over the year, Kateri plans to partner with the OHSU Brain Institute and the Oregon chapter of SfN to share with other scientists what she learned at Hill Day, and to engage the public in local neuroscience news, including exciting advances in research and policy/funding decisions that effect neuroscience at OHSU.

baconguis-isabelle_vollumIsabelle Baconguis, 2012 NGP Alumna, has received an NIH Director's Early Independence Award. This program supports "exceptional students who have the intellect, innovation, drive, and maturity to flourish independently without the need for traditional postdoctoral training." Thirty-one candidates were selected as finalists for this award, based on the quality of the graduate work, training environment, and potential as an independent investigator.  Isabelle's proposal received  high praise from the reviewers which speaks highly about the NGP, her training with Eric Gouaux, her project on ENaC structure, and, most importantly, Isabelle's potential as an independent investigator.  Congratulations, Isabelle!