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 Neurobiology Graduate Training at Duke


Grad Program home graphic

Putative medium spiny neuron in the nucleus accumbens with activity inhibited both by feeding (A) and in slow wave sleep (B).  From Tellez LA., Perez IO,. Simon SA and Gutierrez R. (2012)

The Graduate Program in Neurobiology at Duke is an interdepartmental program for students to pursue the PhD degree. Our mission is to train future leaders in the field of Neurobiology. Our 42 faculty mentors have homes in 13 departments: Neurobiology, Cell Biology, Bioengineering, Biology, Ophthalmology, Anesthesia, Neurology, Pediatrics, Medicine, Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Radiology, Surgery, and Psychology and Neuroscience.

The Neurobiology program is oriented towards questions of the structure and function of brain cells and the brain. Companion programs with somewhat different emphases include: the Cognitive Neuroscience Training Program and the Systems and Integrative Neuroscience Program. Students should apply to the program that best fits their long-term research interests and professional goals. The research interests of the training faculty may provide the most useful information about the best fit for each individual student. 

Upcoming events

Friday, August 28, 2015, Informal Seminar
301 Bryan Bldg, 10:00 - 11:00 am
Adam Kepecs, PhD
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
"Decisions under uncertainty: behavioral algorithms and prefrontal cortical circuit motifs"

Tuesday, September 15, 2015, Neurobiology Invited Seminar Series
103 Bryan Bldg, noon - 1:00 pm
Marlene R. Cohen, PhD
University of Pittsburgh
"Multineuron approaches to studying attention"

Tuesday, September 22, 2015, Neurobiology Invited Seminar Series
103 Bryan Bldg, noon - 1:00 pm
Christopher J. McBain, PhD
National Institutes of Health
"Constructing the excitatory drive of hippocampal feedforward inhibitory pathway"


Job Opening: Director of Duke's Viral Vector Core

News and recognition

Lindsey Glickfeld wins Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship

TED talk by Miguel Nicolelis

Career profile of Erich Jarvis in Science Magazine

Erich Jarvis' papers on the genetic origin of birdsong named a top-10 achievement of 2014 by Science Magazine

Miguel Nicolelis named to The Verge's Top 50 list for 2014

Kevin Mauro (Nicolelis lab) is a Pratt 2015 Grand Challenge Scholar: interview for White House OST

Yong Chen from Liedtke lab honored for #1 junior poster presentation by TMJ Association

Greg Field named Whitehead Scholar at Duke

Paper in Nature Communications from Liedtke lab. News at: Duke News and Der Speigel

Matt Kearny, MSTP (Mooney lab), elected to Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society at Duke

Miguel Nicolelis recognized as one of top 30 most influential neuroscientists alive today

Paper in Nature Communications from Kafui Dzirasa's lab and story in USA Today

World Cup Opening: News of the Walk Again Project of Miguel Nicolelis. Story #1.  Story #2

Paper in eLife from Ted Stanek, others, and Fan Wang, plus nice news story
"Monosynaptic premotor circuit tracing reveals neural substrates for oro-motor coordination"

Paper in Neuron from Jorg Grandl's laboratory, and commentary in Duke Today
"Directionality of Temperature Activation in Mouse TRPA1 Ion Channel Can Be Inverted by Single-Point Mutations in Ankyrin Repeat Six"

Lisberger and Yang, paper in Nature
"Purkinje cell plasticity and cerebellar learning are graded by complex-spike duratiion

Jeremy Kay wins McKnight Scholars Award

Story on Miguel Nicolelis' "Walk Again" Project in The Guardian (UK)

Rich Mooney wins 2014 Research Mentoring Award for Basic Science in the School of Medicine

Terry Jones (Nicolelis lab) receives a "Meritorious Service Award" in the 2013 Duke Presidential Awards

Court Hull and Jeremy Kay awarded 2014 Sloan Research Fellowships

Nicole Calakos and Henry Yin win a McKnight Foundation Memory and Cognitive Function Award

Paper in Neuron: Murugan, Harwood, Scharff, and Mooney
"Diminished FoxP2 Levels Affect Dopaminergic Modulation of Corticostriatal Signaling Important to Song Variability."
See press release from Duke

Lindsey Glickfeld and Court Hull recognized as Whitehead Scholars at Duke

Ten-year project from Erich Jarvis redraws map of bird brain. DukeToday

Kevin Franks awarded grant from Mallinckrodt Foundation

Fan Wang wins NIH Pioneer Award

Edward (Ted) Stanek in Fan Wang's lab is awarded an NRSA pre-doctoral fellowship

Shenyu Zhai awarded the 1st annual "Bill Hall Prize for Excellence in Graduate Student Research"
Special thanks to Terry Wu for establishing the prize

Paper in J. Neuroscience from Rich Mooney's lab
Anders Nelson, David Schneider et al., "A circuit for motor cortical modulation of auditory cortical activity", article on Duke Today

Paper in PNAS on sunburn pain from Wolfgang Liedke's lab
"UVB radiation generates sunburn pain and affects skin by activating epidermal TRPV4 and triggering endothelin-1 signaling," by Carlene Moore, et al.

Paper in Neuron from Jim McNamara's lab
"Transient inhibition of TrkB Kinase after status epilepticus prevents development of temporal lobe epilepsy," by G Liu, et al. 

News stories on Miguel Nicolelis in the Washington Post and in Nature

Essay by Steve Lisberger on "Fraud in Neuroscience"

Jorg Grandl awarded Klingenstein Fellowship

Paper in Nature from Chay Kuo and Cagla Eroglu
"Protective astrogenesis from the SVZ niche after injury is controlled by Notch modulator Thbs4" by Eric J. Benner, Dominic Luciano, Rebecca Jo, Khadar Abdi, Patricia Paez-Gonzalez, Huaxin Sheng, David S. Warner, Chunlei Liu, Cagla Eroglu & Chay T. Kuo. Nature (2013). See press release from Duke

Kevin Franks and Jeremy Kay recognized as Whitehead Scholars at Duke