Faculty & Research
The Preclinical Molecular Neuropharmacology Research Team
Morrow Lab (left to right): Nikki Leonard, Alex Fetzer, Lihan Deng, Ana Maria Dumitru, Todd O’Buckley, Smita Gupta, A. Leslie Morrow, Ph.D., Chandler Walker, Jason Cook, and Patrizia Porcu, Ph.D.
Lab Phone: (919) 966-4977
Current Research Projects
--Neurosteroids and Ethanol Interactions
--Mechanisms of Alcohol Addiction Pathogenesis
--Stress, Alcohol and GABAergic Neuroactive Steroids
--Discovered that neurosteroids mediate specific pharmacological effects of ethanol in rodents and contribute to subjective effects of ethanol in humans.
--Found that alcohol-dependent rats are sensitized to the anticonvulsant effects of neurosteroids. Neurosteroids protect against the CNS hyperexcitability of alcohol withdrawal.
--Discovered that chronic ethanol consumption alters GABAA receptor function, due to alterations in gene expression, receptor phosphorylation, and receptor trafficking.
--Identified a neurosteroid marker of risk for binge alcohol consumption in cynomologus monkeys. Dexamethasone suppression of plasma deoxycorticosterone and pregnenolone predict high alcohol drinking.
--Found that chronic ethanol consumption alters neurosteroid responses to HPA axis modulation.