Incoming Hood Fellow – Professor Martyn Goulding
Professor Martyn Goulding (San Diego, USA) is an internationally recognised and acclaimed molecular neuroscientist who leads the Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory at the Salk Institute, a research centre ranked in the top five in the world.
A native New Zealander and a graduate of the University of Auckland, Professor Goulding is working primarily in the field of spinal cord sensorimotor circuitry. He has developed a unique approach of identifying specific attributes of spinal nerve cells - which may also be applied to other central nervous system neurons -including their morphology, neurotransmitter phenotype and connectivity.
Whilst Professor Goulding has established an international reputation for his pioneering work on identifying and describing the function of spinal interneurons that generate and pattern rhythmic locomotor movements, he is also passionate about providing opportunities for the next generation of neuroscientists.
Professor Louise Nicholson is responsible for hosting Professor Goulding as one of this year’s Incoming Hood Fellows. She believes his personal style, great sense of humour and relaxed delivery make him an outstanding role model for our young neuroscientists.
During his visit to the Centre for Brain Research in early 2017, Professor Goulding will deliver a public lecture, a series of seminars for scientists and clinicians affiliated with the University of Auckland and have several meetings with emerging and established neuroscientists.
Our Centre has developed a world-class Spinal Cord Injury Research Facility and this visit by Professor Goulding will enhance our research standing in this field and help increase the capacity of this facility by attracting new talent to work in this area of research.
Professor Goulding’s visit will expand our horizons, particularly in the area of molecular mapping, and behavioural and electrophysiological modelling where his experience will add both breadth and depth to our research.
"Spinal Circuits for Touch and Pain"
The somatosensory system plays central role in transmitting information about our immediate environment. Up until recently, surprisingly little was known about the central pathways that transmit and process this information.
Using a suite of cutting-edge genetic and molecular techniques in combination with electrophysiological and behavioral analyses, my lab has begun to elucidate the composition and functional organization of the neuronal circuits in the spinal cord that process the senses of touch and pain.
These efforts have revealed an underlying modular logic in which specialized neuron cell types have dedicated roles in processing different somatosensory modalities.
This seminar will discuss the team's recent findings on how these circuits are organized and relate these discoveries to sensory disorders such as chronic itch, allodynia, and to movement disorders.