• What is the precise role of changes in acetylcholine release on synaptic physiology and behavior?
  • How does the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT) regulate acetylcholine synaptic release?
  • What role does the cholinergic system play during aging?
  • What is the neurotoxic potential of combinations of commonly-used pesticides and how can we use a simple model such as Drosophila to find out?
  • How do the interactions between genes and the environment predispose certain individuals to Parkinson’s disease and not other?

We are taking advantage of an excellent collection of genetic and molecular tools available in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and a wide array of approaches including biochemistry, behavior, light & electron microscopy, and electrophysiology to address these questions.