Our approach combines state of the art molecular biology techniques, custom-designed screening assays, ex vivo and in vivo imaging methods. We are also very keen to establish cross-disciplinary collaborations with the dissemination of our novel tools and expertise.
Our current projects focus on four main objectives:
1) Development of novel high-quality genetically-encoded sensors and imaging modalities for detecting neuromodulators (i.e. monoamines, neuropeptides, neurohormones) in vitro and in vivo with high sensitivity;
2) Deployment of these sensors in brain slices and behaving animals to investigate the spatial and temporal scales of neuromodulatory signals, as well as their relationship with neural circuit activity and animal behavior;
3) Development of new optical tools for controlling endogenous neuropeptide signaling with high spatiotemporal precision;
4) To establish a new platform for high-throughput screening and use it to search for novel pharmacologically active molecules potentially useful for human disease treatment or prevention.