Rainbo C. Hultman, PhD
A primary difficulty in developing therapeutics for brain disorders is that the underlying etiological mechanisms are not well understood. We have made recent breakthroughs in our understanding of the relationship between electrical activity in the brain and behavior in rodent models, which is promising for shedding light on these mechanisms. My lab studies networks of electrical activity in the brain using pre-clinical rodent models of disease and is working to identify the cellular and molecular factors that contribute to the organization of such networks. Our overarching goal is to conduct research that will promote the eventual development of precision medicine (i.e. therapeutics targeted to specific individuals) by identifying cellular and molecular targets that promote healthy brain electrical network activity. Two brain disorders of immediate focus in the lab include migraine and major depressive disorder. By probing the underlying electrical networks of these disorders and identifying molecular drivers of such activity, we will be better positioned to develop more effective treatments for these debilitating disorders.