Theme: Ecology genetics and evolution


We are fascinated by how brains encode adaptive behaviours and the genetic changes that lead to mental health disorders. As key adaptive behaviours are conserved across the animal kingdom, we are able to use the simple genetic model organism, C. elegans in our studies. This is allowing us to investigate the genetic basis of three mental health conditions: disordered eating, addiction and anxiety. We employ pharmacology, behavioural assays, mutant analysis, gene expression profiling and fluorescence microscopy in these studies. We link our results to human mental health using therapeutic drugs, human GWAS data and bioinformatics.

Additional Information: Students should have a background in at least one of the following: genetics, neurobiology, pharmacology or animal behaviour. Strengths in statistics or programming will be well-regarded. Prior lab experience will also be a plus.

Contact: Associate Professor Paul Ebert