I was born and raised in New York, but I’ve been pretty successful at disguising my accent so far. I graduated Summa cum laude from SUNY Binghamton (Binghamton, NY) with a BS in Integrative Neuroscience in 2011. The following fall, I moved to UNC as a member of the BBSP and joined the Neurobiology Curriculum in the spring of 2012. Outside of lab, I spend too much time and money trying out new restaurants in the triangle area.
Binge drinking amongst adolescents is a serious health concern, as alcohol use during this vulnerable developmental period has been linked to increased risk of disease and substance abuse in adulthood. Amongst humans and animal models of alcohol consumption, adolescents have consistently been shown to consume greater quantities of alcohol than their adult counterparts. The aim of my research is to elucidate age differences between adolescents and adults that may underlie this adolescent-typical pattern of binge drinking. Using a combination of behavioral and molecular techniques, I hope to investigate age differences in subcellular targets and neurobiological signaling pathways that are modulated by ethanol. This work may reveal new targets for pharmacological manipulations to reduce binge drinking amongst adolescent animals.