Congratulations to Cara Buck who obtained her PhD today. She was given the challenge of setting up a brand new technique in the lab (ultrasonic vocalization recordings) and an even bigger challenge in making sense of what they mean.
Lots of hard work, long days and endless recordings later, she not only setup the technique but managed to published 3 papers with one more in submission.
Her work unveil some of the neurobiological mechanisms underlying ultrasonic vocalizations, and clearly demonstrate that different types of vocalizations are tightly associated and sometimes even predict the motivation for food and alcohol in animals that have been deprived.
Great job Cara, well deserved Dr. Buck!
If you are interestd in ultrasonic vocalization and motivation/addiction, below are the papers.
Rat 22 kHz USVs as a specific measure of anxiety and arousal: potentiation by alcohol dependence and lack of corticotropin-releasing factor 1 (CRF1) receptor antagonist effects'
Cara L. Buck,1, 2, * Marian Logrip,1 Olivier George,1 George F. Koob,1, 3 Leandro F. Vendruscolo1
Anticipatory 50 kHz ultrasonic vocalizations are associated with escalated alcohol intake in dependent rats Authors: Cara L Buck; Jordan C Malavar; Olivier George; George F Koob; Leandro F Vendruscolo Behavioural Brain Research, in press.
Dopamine D1 and μ-opioid receptor antagonism blocks anticipatory 50 kHz ultrasonic vocalizations induced by palatable food cues in Wistar rats.
Buck CL, Vendruscolo LF, Koob GF, George O. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2014 Mar;231(5):929-37. doi: 10.1007/s00213-013-3307-2. Epub 2013 Nov 13. PubMed PMID: 24221826; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3945412.
Addiction as a stress surfeit disorder. Neuropharmacology.
Koob GF, Buck CL, Cohen A, Edwards S, Park PE, Schlosburg JE, Schmeichel B, Vendruscolo LF, Wade CL, Whitfield TW Jr, George O.2014 Jan;76 Pt B:370-82. doi: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2013.05.024. Epub 2013 Jun 6. PubMed PMID: 23747571; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3830720.