Shannon Cole
Curriculum Vitae (PDF)PDF-logo


Biopsychology Graduate Student


General Research Interests

I am interested in how dopaminergic and amino acid transmitter systems are involved in motivated behaviors, such searching for food or the generation of fear. I am primarily interested in the rostral-caudal motivation gradient of the nucleus accumbens shell (NAcs) and the lateral septum. 

Current Projects

  • Utilizing optogenetic techniques to compare the contributions of "direct"/D1 and "indirect"/D2 pathways in the ventral striatum and lateral septum in the production of appetitive behavior.
  • Examining how cortical and subcortical afferents influence the NAcs and the lateral septum to induce motivated behaviors and how ambient cues can mediate these effects.
  • Contrasting the effects of pharmacological agents (e.g., DNQX, muscimol, etc.) and optogenetic manipulations in the NAcs rostro-caudal gradient.
Optogenetics, intracranial microinjections, transgenic animal manipulations, food intake, operant tasks