A compact genome, tiny brain, and impressive toolbox of sophisticated neurogenetic tools make the fly an excellent model to understand the neural substrate of behavior. We use the powerful molecular and genetic tools available in the fly to investigate the neural substrates of drug reward at the molecular and cellular level.
Drosophila show remarkably long-lasting memories for a cue associated with an intoxicating dose of alcohol. We investigate the neural circuitry and associated molecular mechanisms within the fly brain that regulate this memory.
Our approach combines behavioural neuroscience, neuropharmacology, functional imaging, genetics, cell biology, molecular biology, biochemistry, bioinformatics and computer science in order to understand the mechanisms regulating memories for a drug experience.
Learn more about Dr. Kaun in a People Behind the Science Podcast