Personal History:I received my PhD from University of Delhi, India. My PhD work was on the cholinesterase inhibitory and neuromuscular modulatory effects of beta-adrenergic blockers. I joined the research group of Dr. Albuquerque as a postdoctoral fellow and continued my research interests using electrophysiological techniques on muscle nicotinic receptors. As an assistant professor in the department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics I continue to work with Dr. Albuquerque on brain nicotinic receptor electrophysiology.
During my research career in India, I worked on both in vitro and in vivo animal models. I had a keen interest on synaptic transmission which I studied using skeletal neuromuscular junction as a model system. In addition, I was also involved in behavioral experiments in rats and mice. In particular, I focused some of my attention in understanding the pharmacology of "isolation-induced aggressive behavior" in rats.
After I moved to University of Maryland, I applied electrophysiological techniques to study various ligand-gated ion channels present on the neurons. My research interests include testing the effects of heavy metal lead ions on NMDA and nicotinic receptor channels, physiological and pharmacological identification of various nicotinic receptor subtypes in the brain of developing and adult animals (mice, rats and guinea-pigs), and understanding the molecular mechanisms of psychoactive drugs such as nicotine and alcohol.
Lab Techniques and Equipment:
· Patch-clamp techniques (cell-attached recording, whole-cell patch, and single channel recordings)
· Cultured brain neurons for electrophysiology
· Brain slices from hippocampus, cortex, striatum, nucleus accumbens for electrophysiology
· Labeling of neurons in brain slices using Lucifer yellow, biocytin and calbindin.