Twin, family, and adoption studies have shown that both genetic and environmental factors increase risk for developing problems with the use of alcohol and other addictive drugs. Animals such as mice are used to study specific genes and mechanisms that might be important because we can control their drug exposure and can influence their genetics. This lab uses bred mice to show high and low levels of drug intake and sensitivity in our research to identify genes that are important in risk for drug abuse. We then study relevant behaviors to see if possible treatment drugs can alter drug-related behaviors. Researchers are also interested in responses to repeated drug treatments and to factors that affect relapse to drug use. Identification of important genes will help in the development of therapeutic interventions. Activities that the intern might perform using mice include measuring alcohol or methamphetamine preference drinking, measuring locomotor responses to drugs of abuse, measuring other behavioral responses to drugs such as changes in anxiety, coordination, sedation, aversion, and reward.
Applicants should be aware that on-site parking may be limited and/or unavailable throughout the summer; interns may be required to rely on public transit or alternative transportation. Females, minorities, first generation college-bound students, students from low income households, and students with a primary language other than English are encouraged to apply for this internship.