For Lilach Gorodetski’s PhD in Life Sciences at Bar-Ilan University, she investigated basal ganglia circuits in rat brains. These are involved in motor control and, as such, in many neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental brain disorders (NDDs) such as Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease and Tourette syndrome.
For her postdoc in the department of Neurobiology at the University California San Diego, Dr. Gorodetski focuses on studying synaptic plasticity and neural circuits function in different developmental stages in mice mutations related to NDDs. She examines mutations that play essential roles in glutamatergic synapse formation. Mice with these mutations reproduce many behaviors characteristic of NNDs, including autism, intellectual disability, and epilepsy. While scientists understand much about the general genetic basis of these disorders, our understanding of synaptic function and developmental changes is limited. Dr. Gorodetski believes that a greater understanding of these changes could be key to the development of novel disease-specific therapies.
The UCSD Neurobiology Program is ranked among the top neuroscience and behavior programs in the world. In that environment, Dr. Gorodetski can join larger group meetings and many research centers.