Dr. Duncan Sinclair: NHMRC CJ Martin Early Career Fellow, NeuRA.
12 – 1 pm: 19 September,
Keats Room, Psychology.
Title: Using the senses to study brain disorders- an avenue to
Sensory systems, such as audition and olfaction, can be leveraged powerfully
and non-invasively to gain insight into brain function. In a disease context,
this approach has been valuable for neurodevelopmental disorders such as
Fragile X syndrome, Autism Spectrum Disorder and schizophrenia, all of which
are characterized by abnormal behavioural responses to sensory stimuli.
Interrogation of auditory sensory processing in these disorders (and their
relevant rodent models) using electroencephalography (EEG) has shed light on
underlying circuit dysfunction and its behavioural correlates. EEG measures
such as auditory event-related potentials and neural oscillations have also
been useful for evaluation of candidate drugs in preclinical studies, such as
GABA-B agonists in the Fmr1 knockout mouse model of Fragile X syndrome.
Promising findings from these studies have prompted the question “Could we
plausibly use EEG to identify treatment-responsive clinical subtypes, or
monitor treatment response?”
Dr. Duncan Sinclair completed his PhD in 2012 with Professor Cyndi Shannon
Weickert at Neuroscience Research Australia and the University of New South
Wales. He then moved to the US to work as a postdoctoral fellow at the
University of Pennsylvania, in the laboratories of Associate Professor
Chang-Gyu Hahn and Professor Steven Siegel as part of an NHMRC CJ Martin Early
Career Fellowship. After three and a half years, Duncan returned to Australia
at the beginning of 2016, resuming his postdoctoral research in Cyndi's
laboratory. Broadly speaking, his research has focused on understanding risk
factors for psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders, and how they exert
their effects at the molecular, cellular and neural circuit levels.
Hosted by Dr. Lauren
Fellow, School of Psychology.