Office: BH 413
My research is utilizing a rodent model of autism to examine the neurobiology of the disorder. In addition to examining social interactions, and repetitive behavior, the lab will be examining changes in cognitive flexibility and multisensory processing. We are using the VPA (valproic acid) model of autism because it has both construct and face validity and provides a way to examine behavioral changes developmentally. Projects include looking at differences between control and VPA treated rats in cognitive attention tasks, and the associated neurobiological changes found in grey matter volumes of the cerebellum. Additionally, we are examining similar executive function deficits in rodent models of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). We are interested in regulating dopamine more selectively to improve performance on attention tasks.
The lab is actively recruiting students! Interested undergraduate or graduate students should email Dr. Plakke. Students will have the opportunity to design experiments as well as participate in collecting and analyzing data. A variety of techniques including behavioral handling and training of animals, histology, ELISA assays, and immunohistochemistry can be learned by students. Students can develop a project and present the work at regional or national conferences and can gain valuable experience sharing their research.
Payne, M., Mali, I., Shrestha, T., McKinnell, Z. E., Bossman,S., Plakke, B. (2021). Increased volumes of lobule VI in a valproic acid model of autism are associated with worse set-shifting performance in male Long-Evan rats. Brain Research,1765, 147495.
McKinnell, Z.E. , Maze, T., Challans, B., Ramos, A., Plakke, B. (2021). Valproic acid treated Long-Evans rats are impaired on attentional set-shifting. Behavioural Brain Research, 397, 112966.
Plakke, B., Romanski, L.M. (2016). Neural circuits in auditory and audiovisual memory. Brain Research. 1640 (Pt B), 278-288.
Plakke, B., Hwang, J., Romanski, L.M. (2015). Inactivation of primate prefrontal cortex impairs auditory and audiovisual working memory. The Journal of Neuroscience, 35(26): 9666-9675.
Plakke, B., Romanski, L.M. (2014). Auditory connections and functions of prefrontal cortex. Review Frontiers in Neuroscience.8:199. Ng, C.W., Plakke, B., Poremba, A. (2014). Neural correlates of auditory recognition memory in the primate dorsal temporal pole. Journal of Neurophysiology, 111(3): 455-69.
Plakke, B., Diltz, M.D., Romanski, L.M. (2013). Coding of vocalizations by single neurons in ventrolateral prefrontal cortex. Hearing Research, 305:135-143.
Plakke, B., Ng, C.W., Poremba, A. (2013). Neural correlates of auditory recognition memory in primate lateral prefrontal cortex. Neuroscience, 244: 62-76.
Ng, C.W., Plakke, B., Poremba, A. (2009). Primate auditory recognition memory performance varies with sound type. Hearing Research, 256: 64-74.
Plakke, B., Freeman, J.H., Poremba, A. (2009). Metabolic mapping of the rat forebrain during delay and trace eyeblink conditioning. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 92(3): 335-44.
Plakke, B., Ng, C. W., Poremba, A. (2008). Scopolamine impairs auditory delayed matching-to-sample performance in monkeys. Neuroscience Letters, 438(1), 126-130.
Plakke, B., Freeman, J.H., Poremba, A. (2007). Metabolic mapping of the rat cerebellum during delay and trace eyeblink conditioning. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 88:11-18.