Sex Hormones and Addiction
Meet the Scientist
Hello everyone, my name is Jean Rivera (@thebrainscientist on Instagram), and I’m a graduate student in the Neuroscience program at Weill Cornell. You can read more about my background here.
Our lab is interested in identifying and characterizing the neural circuit mechanisms of addiction and comorbid anxiety and affective neuropsychiatric disorders.
To study this, we mainly focus on the role of sex hormones in:
1) the organization of behaviorally-relevant limbic circuits
2) the activity of cell type- and projection-defined neuronal populations within these circuits
3) the receptor-specific signaling of neuropeptides and neurotransmitters at critical synaptic nodes.
Using a number of complementary molecular, physiological, and behavioral techniques, including neuronal tracing, in situ hybridization, immunohistochemistry, confocal
microscopy, slice electrophysiology, and in vivo and ex vivo optogenetics and chemogenetics, we are able to analyze neural circuit mechanisms of addiction and mood disorders at the anatomical, molecular, cellular, synaptic, circuit, and behavioral levels.
 The Williams Hippocampus and Memory Lab (image replica)