Gonadal function in males and females is dependent on hypothalamic input (GnRH) to the anterior pituitary gland to regulate gonadotropin production. Our goal is to elucidate the developmental, functional, and molecular phenotypes of the neural networks that underlie GnRH production by the hypothalamus and the cellular and molecular events underlying GnRH signaling at the level of the anterior pituitary gland. Understanding these hypothalamic and pituitary mechanisms will yield new therapeutic targets for fertility regulation and provide new insights into how the brain and the pituitary integrate diverse peripheral physiological “signals” (e.g., metabolic condition, obesity, ovarian steroids, stress, photoperiod, etc.) that lead to fertility, subfertility, and infertility.
Hypothalamic and pituitary mechanisms underlying the generation of the ovulatory LH surge
Cellular and molecular mechanisms of estradiol signaling in the brain and pituitary gland
Neurology of food intake and addiction
Neurology of stress and depression
CNS regulation of vascular smooth muscle and cardiovascular function
Fetal development of the hypothalamus