I am interested in the neural basis of night vision, particularly in neural events that occur in the retina during the early stages of the visual process. My research is focused on the regulation of light sensitivity at the level of rod photoreceptors and at various sites in the retinal network. In my studies of the retina, I use the electroretinogram (ERG), mostly on rodents, to evaluate light responses from the photoreceptors, bipolar cells and other classes of neurons under wide range of experimental conditions. I often combine the use of the ERG with pharmacological methods.
I also study the visual sensitivity of the mouse using psychophysical techniques. The mouse provides the most comprehensive animal model for understanding the molecular basis of mammalian photoreceptor and retinal function. Mice with targeted mutations expressed in the photoreceptors and retina that may produce altered vision, are now available. Our work is focused on the development of a behavioral method for measuring the sensitivity of individual mice to light in order to facilitate testing of hypotheses about the effects of genetic manipulations on visual sensitivity.
Frequently Taught Courses
- Introduction to Psychology
- Introduction to Sensation and Perception
- Seminar in Sensation
- Proseminar in Sensation and Perception