The laboratory is interested in the neurobiological basis behind our ability to detect touch and pain. These fundamental processes, termed somatosensation and nociception, respectively, allow for the detection of chemical, mechanical, and thermal stimuli, and can critically differentiate between innocuous and noxious stimuli.
Peripheral afferent neurons are the principal sensors of these stimuli and convert discrete environmental cues into neural responses that convey these distinct percepts. They are also key in chronic pain produced with injury and disease.
Using a combination of molecular, cellular, genetic, electrophysiological, and biochemical approaches we wish to identify the molecules and cellular processes that produce these debilitating conditions.
It is our hope that these studies will provide insights into the mechanisms that lead to inflammatory and neuropathic pain, thereby leading to the identification of new targets for the development of novel therapeutic approaches to treat such as various ailments such as chronic pain and migraine.