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Nicholas Betley

University of Pennsylvania, Associate Professor of Biology



A cerebellar memory of a meal: adaptive control of food intake


Dr. J. Nichoals Betley attended Columbia University where he worked with Thomas Jessell to investigate the developmental programs that determine synaptic partners during circuit formation. To better understand how neural circuits influence behavior he moved to Janelia Research Campus and worked with Scott Sternson to examine the structure and function of neural circuits that influence feeding behaviors. He moved to the University of Pennsylvania in the Fall of 2015 and is interested in exploring how the brain guides behavior in a dynamic world.  The Betley lab has a long-term research goal of understanding how the brain coordinates adaptive behavioral responses by integrating signals from the body. To this end, my laboratory investigates how neural networks that influence consumption choices are regulated by hunger, food cues and feeding to try and reconstruct the circuits influence food seeking and consumption. His lab has contributed to understanding how the brain integrates signals of hunger with other needs and has recently uncovered a novel role for the cerebellum in regulating food intake. His talk here will focus on emerging evidence for the role of the cerebellum in regulating meal size.