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The Blakely Lab at Florida Atlantic University

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c-fos labelling showing neuronal activation on a whole mouse brain. After immunolabelling and tissue clearing, brain was scanned on the Blaze Light Sheet Ultramicroscope. Credits: Lorena Areal, Paula Kurdziel and Jana Strickler.

Research in the Blakely laboratory is focused on how presynaptic plasma membrane transporter proteins support chemical signaling in the nervous system, how they mediate the entry of transmitter-like neurotoxins into neurons, and whether altered signaling in disease states is supported by genetic variations in transporter structure. Over the past decade, we have been actively involved in the molecular cloning of transporter genes, including the identification of transporters for norepinephrine, epinephrine, serotonin, dopamine, proline, creatine, and choline. Using modern techniques in molecular biology, biochemistry, imaging, and genetics, we apply a multi-disciplinary approach to understand how transporters are organized in the plasma membrane, how they recognize their substrates, how they are regulated, and whether defects in their activity, trafficking, or regulation contribute to altered behavior and physiology.

  Lab and Institute News

Zaka and Maryam Asif baby

Congratulations to Zaka and Maryam Asif on the birth of their son Mikaeel!

Paula Gajewski-Kurdziel

Congratulations for Dr. Paula Gajewski-Kurdziel for her appointment as Research Assistant Professor of the Stiles-Nicholson Brain Institute!

Peter Rodriguez

Congratulations for acceptance of Peter Rodriguez's new paper "Sink or Swim: Does a Worm Paralysis Phenotype Hold Clues to Neurodegenerative Disease? by the Journal of Cellular Physiology!

Maureen K. Hahn, Ph.D.

Congratulations to Maureen K. Hahn, Ph.D. for receiving a patent for a novel method to identify therapeutic agents to treat addiction. Read more.

Carina Meinke

Congratulations to Carina Meinke for winning a Travel Award to attend and lecture at the 2023 International Society for Serotonin Research (ISSR) Meeting in Cancun, Mexico.

Allison Walsh

Congratulations to Allison Walsh for winning 2nd place for her poster presentation at the 2023 College of Medicine Graduate Student Research Day!

Randy D. Blakely, Ph.D., Florida Atlantic University’s Stiles-Nicholson Brain Institute executive director, recently received the Society for Neuroscience’s (SfN) 2022 Science Educator Award. Read More

Masterminds: Growing Community Outreach

Last year's celebration of neuroscience included the annual “Brainy Days” series with a kickoff debuting new insights into autism research.

Masterminds: Silencing the Stigma

Art Gives a Voice to Bipolar Disorder

Masterminds: Community Partner

Bringing a Holistic Approach to Research and Treatment for Degenerative Diseases

Randy Blakely
Randy D. Blakely, Ph.D.
Executive Director
FAU Stiles-Nicholson Brain Institute
David J.S. Nicholson Distinguished Professor in Neuroscience,
Professor, Dept Biomedical Science
Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine

Updated 7/19/2023