Dzirasa Research

The focus of our research is to determine how genetic variants interact with environmental factors (including stress and drugs of abuse) to lead to mental illness. We accomplish this by implanting multiple small electrodes directly into the brains of mice that express genes which lead to mental illness in humans. We then monitor the activity of many brain cells simultaneously as these mice perform various behavioral tasks. We also record brain activity in mice exposed to various environmental stresses, and drugs of abuse. It is our hope that these experiments will one day lead to the discovery of new treatments for our patients with mental illness.