Blakely Lab

The Blakely Lab

Randy Blakely, Ph.D.

Randy Headshot

Allan D. Bass Professor of Pharmacology and Psychiatry

Director, Silvio O. Conte Center for Neuroscience Research

Director, Vanderbilt Postdoctoral Training Program in Neurogenomics


at Florida Atlantic University

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Randy D. Blakely, Ph. D.
Executive Director, FAU Brain Institute
Director, Silvio O. Conte Center for Neuroscience Research

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My laboratory explores mechanisms of synaptic regulation, focusing on how clearance of neurotransmitters by presynaptic and glial transporters regulates neurotransmitter signaling capacity. We use molecular biology, transcriptomic and proteomic methods, model system genetics (C. elegans, recombinant inbred mice), molecular and cellular imaging approaches, electrophysiological paradigms, and transgenic mouse approaches to identify mechanisms by which neurotransmitter transporters insure normal synaptic function and how disease risk is impacted by transporter dysfunction. We also seek to understand how drugs, including antidepressants (e.g. SSRIs) and psychostimulants (e.g. cocaine, ADHD medications) carry out their actions. Finally, we seek to understand the web of molecular interactions that act in concert with, or regulate neurotransmitter transporters to insure proper synaptic signaling and plasticity.

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Congratulations to Meagan Quinlan for winning a Travel Award and a Best Poster Award at the 2015 SFB35 (Transmembrane Transporters in Health and Disease) Symposium in Vienna, Austria. Also, congratulations to Meagan for receipt of a travel award to present her work at the 2016 Meeting of the International Society for Serotonin Research.

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Established in 2007, the Next Generation award recognizes Society for Neuroscience's chapter members who have made outstanding contributions to public communication, outreach and education about neuroscience. Congratulations to Nicole Baganz for winning this year's award for her efforts with the local chapter of NAMI, outreach efforts with yoga, neuroscience and Eastern medicine, and organizing Vanderbilt's Music and Mind Exposition.

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Congratulations to Jane Wright on her 25 years of service at Vanderbilt. Click here to see pictures of her lab celebration.

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Congrats to Neuroscience Ph.D. Student Gwynne Davis for awarding of a Fellowship from the National Institute of Mental Health to pursue “In Vivo Modeling of Heritable Dopamine Transporter Dysfunction Associated with Neuropsychiatric Disorders”

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Congratulations to Ashlin Niedzwiecki on her successful summer project as a Conte SURE Student in the Blakely Lab. Ashlin, a student at Eckerd College, worked with graduate student Chelsea Snarrenberg studying dopamine neurons in C. elegans.

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Congratulations to Dr. Matthew Robson on his receipt of a two-year postdoctoral fellowship from the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) Foundation. Also, congratulations to Matt for receipt of a travel award to present his work at the 2016 Meeting of the International Society for Serotonin Research.

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Congratulations to Phyllis Freeman on her National Science Foundation grant resulting from her work in the Blakely Lab.

To learn more about Dr. Freeman, her research on the dopamine transporter in
C. elegans and her role at Fisk University, please click here.

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