The Smith Laboratory focuses on “Neuro-Glia” interactions. Their research explore the understudied and novel mechanisms by which neuromodulators mediate the interactions between neurons, astrocytes, and microglia in both normal and disease states. By studying how neuromodulators mediate the unique interactions between these 3 cells types, Dr. Smith and his team will elucidate their coordinated functions in the normal, healthy brain and how disruptions of neuronal glial crosstalk will contribute to disease processes such as ADHD, depression, and epilepsy. To that end, Dr. Smith hopes these studies will provide valuable insight on the role of glia in pathophysiology, which is under-recognized in developmental disorders. To accomplish these goals, the Smith Laboratory employs a combination of transgenic animals, electrophysiology, pharmacology, behavioral assays, and 2-Photon Ca2+ imaging in acute slices and awake behaving animals.