Elena Chartoff

Assistant Professor, Psychiatry & Neuroscience
Harvard Medical School
Director, Neurobiology of Motivated Behavior Laboratory, McLean Hospital

My lab is interested in the molecular and neural circuit-based mechanisms that underlie drug addiction. We are particularly interested in how negative affective states (depression, anxiety, etc) that precede drug taking or emerge with drug withdrawal contribute to addictive behavior. We use rodent models of drug-taking behavior and we study males and females in parallel so we can be sensitive to possible sex differences.


Laura Cornelissen

Instructor in Anesthesia, Boston Children’s Hospital

Dr Cornelissen’s research aims to understand the impact of anesthesia and prolonged sedation on brain development in human infants. Currently, she is using electroencephalography (EEG) to explore (1) how healthy infants respond to different types of general anesthesia; and (2) how repeated anesthesia or prolonged sedation in early life affect network connectivity and trajectories of neurodevelopment. She also studies the neurophysiology of pain in childhood, particularly conditions of chronic pain such as juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

John E. Dowling

John E. Dowling

Gordon and Llura Gund Research Professor of Neurosciences
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology

I have long studied the vertebrate retina, using it as a model piece of the brain.  With students and colleagues, we have studied its functional organization including its synaptic organization, the light  responses of individual retinal cells, and the neurotransmitters/modulators  used by the retinal cells to communicate information.  In recent years, we have focused on the zebrafish retina, carrying out forward-genetic studies as well studies on its tetrachromatic color vision system.  I have now closed my laboratory but am presently working with Jeff Lichtman’s group and others to reconstruct the human fovea in three dimensions.