UK now has a chapter of Nu Rho Psi, the National Honor Society in Neuroscience.

Stay tuned for details on applying for membership


Dr. Gerhardt’s laboratory focuses on studies of the dopamine and glutamate neurotransmitter systems in animal models of Parkinson’s disease. 

 A major finding from these studies is that there is a severe disruption of dopamine regulation in the parkinsonian brain. This disruption of the control of dopamine may relate to some of the movement problems seen in this CNS disease. His laboratory is currently investigating the use of growth factors, such as GDNF, to restore function to damaged dopamine neurons. His laboratory has recently shown that GDNF can restore function to damaged dopamine neurons in rats and monkeys. This forms the basis for the Morris K. Udall Parkinson’s Disease Center of Excellence.


Another area of


                                             Lobelia cardinalis


University of Kentucky Professors John Littleton (Psychology),  Greg Gerhardt (Anatomy and Neurobiology, Center for Microelectrode Technology, Morris K. Udall Parkinson's Disease Center of Excellence), and doctoral student Dustin Brown have written a scientific paper for publication entitled “Target-directed evolution of plant biosynthesis toward a specific pharmacological phenotype”.


According to LIttleton, "We expressed the human dopamine transporter (DAT) in plant cells and then selected a mutant population of these transgenic cells in MPP+, a DAergic neurotoxin that is accumulated intracellularly by the DAT. Transgenic mutants that over-produce inhibitors of the DAT should survive because MPP+ will not accumulate in them. Out of 109 MPP+-resistant mutants 58


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