Elizabeth Rodriguez

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Post Doc University of Michigan
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B.A. in Psychology, Hunter College

Research Mentor: Israel Liberzon

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe and debilitating disorder that can emerge following exposure to a traumatic event. The development of effective rehabilitation strategies requires identification of specific and modifiable targets that can ease the burden of PTSD symptomatology. Functionally, prefrontal cortex (PFC)-hippocampus (Hpc) circuitry is critical for extinction retention and contextual processing, and PTSD patients have been shown to have impairments in these functions. We have developed an extensively studied animal model of PTSD-Single Prolonged Stress (SPS)- focusing on abnormalities in PFC-Hpc neurocircuitry that mimics PTSD specific behavioral deficits, and that are linked to neurobiological changes in the PFC and Hpc. My research investigates the specific role in the hippocampus play in these core PTSD deficits. Specifically, I an researching how hippocampal neurogenesis may play a role in contextual modulation of fear response.