Originally from Lansdale, Pennsylvania, I graduated from The Pennsylvania State University in 2017 with a B.S. in Biology and minors in Psychology and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. During that time, I worked as an undergraduate research assistant in Dr. Moriah Szpara's lab, where I completed an undergraduate Honors thesis studying in vitro cellular phenotypes of herpes simplex virus type 1 infection. I started my PhD at The Scripps Research Institute in the fall of 2017, and spent a year developing my research interests in both neuroscience and metabolism. I look forward to connecting these two fields throughout my PhD research in addiction. Outside of the lab, I enjoy baking/cooking, going to trivia nights, and watching Penn State football.
Looking at how feeding metabolism and physiology is disrupted by drugs of abuse at different points of the addiction cycle
During my postdoc in epigenetics and molecular biology at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, I was working on a novel therapeutic approach for the neurodevelopmental disorder, Rett syndrome. In the George lab, I want to delve deeper into neuroscience, trying to better understand and treat substance use disorder, both as a goal on itself and as a model for other disorders.
Startup of new project: - Epigenetic variation (start with looking at MECP2 levels) in the biobank brains. Then try to selectively modulate MECP2 levels and evaluate behavioral change. Joining in ongoing projects: - Nociceptin - Pre-clinical testing of oral compound for alcohol dependence - Neuronal ensembles