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Explore Health and Human Development

David Vandenbergh, Ph.D.
Lab Director

The research goal of the Molecular Genetics Laboratory (Vandenbergh Lab) is to understand the molecular basis of addiction.

We are using a combination of human genetic studies and mouse models that focus on nicotine and its effects on the brain.

More specifically, we are studying:

  • The molecular-level responses of the brain to drugs of abuse, especially nicotine;
  • The neurobiological factors that underlie individual differences in nicotine consumption;
  • The molecular genetic determinants of nicotine’s appetitive effects

More details can be found on this site (links in the right-hand column) and at