Fear regulation in the amygdala and the medial prefrontal cortex

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Anxiety disorders are characterised by excessive and irrational fears in situations that are patently safe. In both humans and animals, failure to appropriately regulate fear has been associated with abnormal functioning of the amygdala and the medial prefrontal cortex. In this project, we will use modern genetic tools in rodents to examine how these two brain regions interact with each other to regulate the expression of learned fear. The ultimate goal will be to generate novel theoretical, pharmacological and behavioural approaches for the treatment of fear-related disorders.

The candidate will have completed a Bachelor or equivalent degree in Psychology or Neuroscience. The candidate will possess theoretical knowledge in the psychological and neural mechanisms underlying learning and memory. Experience in conducting behavioural tasks in rodents and in completing intracranial surgery, histology, immunochemistry and confocal microscopy is recommended. Skills in employing modern genetic tools such chemogenetics or optogenetics would be preferable but not essential.

Supervisory team
Vincent
Laurent

Science
Psychology
Pascal
Carrive

Medicine
Medical Sciences
Fred
Westbrook

Science
Psychology
v.laurent@unsw.edu.au