Dr. Yarimar Carrasquillo
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health
Division of Intramural Research-Section on Behavioral Neurocircuitry and Cellular Plasticity
This in-depth scientific research presentation and discussion on the featured speaker’s latest findings will provide scholars with an experience of how faculty members share and teach about novel knowledge in their fields.
This portion of the seminar is accessible to both scholars and Department of Anesthesiology members, and all will be given the opportunity to ask questions after the talk if desired.
About Dr. Dr. Yarimar Carrasquillo
Dr. Carrasquillo received her B.S. in Biology from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras and her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Baylor College of Medicine. Her graduate work in the lab of Dr. Robert W. Gereau revealed critical roles for the amygdala in the modulation of persistent pain and also demonstrated that the extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK) plays a role in this process. Her postdoctoral studies in the lab of Dr. Jeanne Nerbonne at Washington University School of Medicine revealed previously unappreciated molecular and functional diversity of repolarizing voltage-gated, A-type, (IA) K+ currents in central neurons. Dr. Carrasquillo joined the PAIN Branch at NCCIH as an investigator in 2014 where she directs a multifaceted, multidisciplinary research program focused on delineating the anatomical, molecular and cellular mechanisms that underlie pain perception and modulation.
The main goal of her lab is to identify anatomical, molecular and cellular mechanisms that underlie pathological pain states. Her research focuses on the amygdala, a structure in the limbic brain system that plays critical roles in the modulation of tactile hypersensitivity, pain-related aversion learning and pain-induced changes in anxiety-related behaviors in rodent models of persistent pain.
Studies in her lab use a combination of anatomical, behavioral, electrophysiological and optogenetic approaches to define how alterations in the excitability of amygdala neurons affect function at a circuit-level. These studies focus on evaluating the physiological impact of the modulation of neuronal excitability in distinct anatomical pathways to and from the amygdala on different components of persistent pain, including the sensory, affective and cognitive components.
Dr. Carrasquillo is also strongly committed to and invested in fostering the career development of students and trainees of all backgrounds, particularly underrepresented minorities, trainees with underprivileged and disadvantageous backgrounds and women in science. She is also strongly committed to promoting scientific rigor, transparency and reproducibility in research and in training scientists that understand, value, and exercise scientific integrity throughout their work.