Parker Abbott


Effects of optogenetic theta burst stimulation of the lateral cerebellar nucleus on prelimbic cortex physiology


My research is focused on understanding how cerebellar activity influences the prefrontal cortex. Cognitive functioning is an essential role of the prefrontal cortex, and accumulating evidence suggests that the cerebellum is also a player in this process. Both of these brain areas can be impaired by neuropsychiatric and neurological disease, requiring therapies to improve cognitive outcomes in patients. Cerebellar stimulation has received increased attention as a therapy for cognitive dysfunction due to our expanding knowledge of the cerebellar influence over cognitive behavior. With rats, I stimulate cerebellar output to look at physiological outcomes in the medial prefrontal cortex as a way of assessing brain plasticity in response to the cerebellar activity. My goal is to provide a neurobiological understanding of cerebellar stimulation in order to guide this approach in the clinical setting for treating cognitive dysfunction.


Abbott, Parker
Green Bay, WI
BS, Neuroscience, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities