The goal of my research is to investigate the role of the cerebellum and cerebellar plasticity in motor control and spatial navigation. My model systems are the oculomotor (eye) and vestibular (balance) systems. I focus on studying cerebellar and brainstem function (vestibular nuclei, cerebellar flocculus, Nodulus and Uvula) in primates using single unit recordings, pharmacology, histology and computational methods. We have recently added mouse neurogenetics to our repertoire of experimental tools to study the role of the cerebellar Nodulus and Uvula (NU) during spatial navigation in mice. We have also developed new methods for simultaneously recording and drug delivery in deep structures (ventral paraflocculus) in the awake primate.
Health problems associated with motor control and balance are the most common neurological disorders affecting the world population today. Our research is aimed to understanding motor control and balance in the normal and diseased brain, with the ultimate goal of paving the way towards finding cures and therapies for rehabilitation.