Research interests


The Mark lab is interested in understanding the mechanisms underlying various neurological disorders, so we can develop more effective therapeutic strategies for affected individuals. More explicitly the Mark lab is working on the human P/Q type calcium channel specific diseases, Episodic Ataxia Type 2 and Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 6. Individuals suffering from these diseases can experience ataxia, stress induced seizures, absence epilepsy motor learning deficits and more recently cognitive dysfunctions. The Mark lab created transgenic mouse models to both these diseases to aid in understanding the contribution of the cerebellum to these different diseased states. The Mark lab is also interested in the serotonergic system and how it regulates aggression. We asked ourselves: Why some individuals more aggressive than others? Is it due to their environment or are they just born this way? Interestingly, we found that RGS2 drives male aggression but not anxiety via the serotonergic system. Our research is directed to identifying the other molecules modulating aggression via the serotonergic system. The ultimate goal of the Mark lab is to understanding the mechanisms, molecules and neural circuits underlying these diseases, so we can contribute to the development and establishment of more effective therapeutic strategies to relieve suffering individuals from their neurological deficits.

To investigate and identify the neural circuits, specific cell types, proteins and mechanisms underlying these neurological disorders, we implement a variety and combination of methods.