Dr. Gary Aston-Jones joines us January 14, 2014 to present "What Will You Do Next? Brain Norepinephrine & Goldilocks" for our first Science Cafe installment of 2014.
Dr. Aston-Jones is the William E. Murray SmartState Endowed Chair of Neuroscience at the Medical University of South Carolina, the Director of the Cognitive Neuro Center, and the Co-Director of the Neuroscience Institute.
Brain mechanisms of motivation and cognitive processes are at the center of Dr. Gary Aston-Jones’ work, with particular emphasis on attentional deficits in certain mental disorders. Problems with brain attentional functions are believed to be behind conditions such as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and autism. Dr. Aston-Jones discussed these brain mechanisms at Science Cafe.
His research has led to a new drug treatment for ADD. Some of his other research efforts have applications for better determining the specific processes involved in learning, dementia, addiction and depression.
His Laboratory of Neuromodulation and Behavior “studies brain function at the level of neuronal circuits and systems that underlie specific behaviors. [His] main interests revolve around neuronal circuits that underlie motivated behavior and reward-based learning and memory. We have two major research programs that use a variety of techniques: addiction and cognitive neuroscience.”