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Jacqueline Blundell

B.Sc, M.Sc, Ph.D. Memorial

Assistant Professor

 
Office: SN1061
Phone: (709) 864-7957
Email: jblundell@mun.ca
 
Affiliations: Behavioural Neuroscience

Research Interests

 

Jacqueline Blundell




My research interests lie in understanding the behavioral and neuroplastic changes that are involved in affective and cognitive disorders. Overall, my goal is to make a significant contribution in understanding and advancing the treatment of neuropsychiatric illness.

Using a multi-disciplined approach that combines both behavioral and molecular techniques, my research plan involves two specific aims. First, I will characterize the phenotypic and molecular changes in adult cognitive-, social-, anxiety-, and depression-related behaviors that result from traumatic stress. Second, I will characterize the phenotypic and neuroplastic changes that result from environmental insult during the early stages of development. Also, I will identify specific biological risk factors that are altered by early environmental insult which in turn, increase the likelihood of developing neuropsychiatric illness after exposure to a traumatic stressor. In all, I hope that my research will lead to an increased understanding of the causes of neuropsychiatric disorders that will ultimately result in the development of novel treatments.

Background

I received my Ph.D. in Behavioral Neuroscience from the Memorial University under the supervision of Robert Adamec. Upon completion of my Ph.D. I completed a Post-doctoral Fellowship at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

Student Mentoring

Undergraduate: I look forward to the opportunity to supervise Honours projects. Students who are interested in animal models of anxiety and depression, should contact me to set up an appointment. Students will receive hands-on experience in all aspects of study design, data collection, data analysis and presentation of research results.

In addition to honours students I am interested in mentoring other psychology undergraduate students who would like to gain some research experience by volunteering in a psychology laboratory. I have found that undergraduates that volunteer in psychology labs find it to be a very rewarding experience.

Graduate: I am currently recruiting graduate students who are interested in conducting research into the temporal behavioral and molecular changes that occur following traumatic stress. If your academic research interests are in line with those discussed above, you are encouraged to contact me to discuss the possibility of graduate work in my lab.

Publications

Adamec R, Toth M, Haller J, Halasz J, Blundell J. (2010). Activation patterns of cells in selected brain stem nuclei of more and less stress responsive rats in two animal models of PTSD - Predator exposure and submersion stress. Neuropharmacology

Blundell*, J., Kaeser, P.S., Südhof, T.C, Powell, C.M. (2010). RIM1alpha and interacting proteins involved in presynaptic plasticity mediate prepulse inhibition and additional behaviors linked to schizophrenia. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(15):5326-33.

Blundell*, J., Blaiss, C.A., Etherton, M.R., Espinosa, F., Tabuchi, K., Walz, C.,Bolliger, M.F., Südhof,T.C., & Powell, C.M. (2010). Neuroligin 1 deletion results in impaired spatial memory and increased repetitive behavior. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(6):2115-29.

Netzer WJ, Powell C, Nong Y, Blundell J, Wong L, Duff K, Flajolet M, Greengard P. (2010). Lowering beta-amyloid levels rescues learning and memory in a Down syndrome mouse model. PLoS One. 5(6):e10943.

Blundell*, J., Tabuchi, K., Bolliger, M.F., Blaiss, C., Liu, X., Südhof, T.C., & Powell, C.M. (2009). Increased anxiety-like behavior in mice lacking the inhibitory synapse cell adhesion molecule Neuroligin 2. Genes, Brain, and Behavior, 8(1):114-26.

Zhou, J., Blundell, J., Ogawa, S., Kwon, C.H., Zhang, W., Sinton, C., Powell, C.M., and Parada, L.F. (2009). Pharmacological inhibition of mTOR can suppress anatomical, cellular and behavioral deficiencies in neural specific Pten knock out mice. Journal of Neuroscience, 29(6):1773-83.

Kaeser, P., Kwon, H., Blundell, J., Chevaleyre, V., Morishita, W., Malenka, R.C., Powell, C.M., Castillo, P.E., Südhof, T.C. (2008). RIM1 Phosphorylation at Serine 413 by Protein Kinase A is Not Required for Presynaptic Long-Term Potentiation or Learning. PNAS, 105(38):14680-5

Adamec, R., Holmes, A., & Blundell, J. (2008). Vulnerability to lasting anxiogenic effects of brief exposure to predator stimuli: Sex, serotonin and other factors-Relevance to PTSD, Neuroscience and Biohavioural Reviews 37 (2008) 1287-1292.

Blundell, J., Kouser, M., & Powell, C.M. (2008). Systemic inhibition of the mammalian target of rapamycin blocks fear memory reconsolidation: A novel therapeutic target for post-traumatic stress disorder. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory 90(1), 28-35.

Blundell, J., Hoang, C.V., Potts, B., Gold, S., & Powell, C.M. (2008). Motor coordination deficits in mice lacking RGS9. Brain Research 1190, 78-85.

Adamec, R., Head, D., Soreq, H., & Blundell, J. (2008). The Role of the Read Through Variant of Acetylcholinesterase in Anxiogenic Effects of Predator Stress in Mice. Behavioural Brain Research 181(1), 180-90.

Tabuchi, K., Blundell, J., Etherton, M., Hammer, R.E., Liu, X., Powell, C.M., & Südhof, T.C. (2007). A Neuroligin-3 Mutation Implicated in Autism Increases Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in Mice. Science 318(5847), 71-6.

Powell, C.M. & Blundell, J. (2007) “The Persistence of Memory Persistence: A Surreal Delay in Memory Consolidation”. Cellscience Reviews 3(4).

Shukla, K., Kim, J., Blundell, J., & Powell, C.M. (2007). Learning-induced glutamate receptor phosphorylation resembles that induced by long-term potentiation. Journal of Biological Chemistry 282(25), 18100-7.

Blundell, J., & Adamec, R. (2007). The NMDA receptor antagonist CPP blocks the effects of predator stress on pCREB in brain regions involved in fearful and anxious behavior. Brain Research 1136(1), 59-76.

Cai*, W.H,. Blundell*, J., Han, J., Greene, R.W., Powell, C.M. (2006). Postreactivation glucocorticoids impair recall of established fear memory. Journal of Neuroscience 26(37), 9560-9566.

Blundell, J., Adamec, R., and Burton , P. (2005). Role of NMDA receptors in the syndrome of behavioral changes produced by predator stress. Physiology and Behavior 86(1-2), 233-243.

Blundell, J., & Adamec, R. (2006). Elevated pCREB in the PAG after exposure to the elevated plus maze in rats previously exposed to a cat. Behavioral Brain Research 175(2), 285-95.

Adamec, R., Burton , P., Blundell, J., Murphy, D.L., Holmes, A. (2006). Vulnerability to mild predator stress in serotonin transporter knockout mice. Behavioral Brain Research 170(1), 126-40.

Adamec, R., Head, D., Blundell, J., Burton , P., & Berton, O. (2006). Lasting Anxiogenic effects of feline predator stress in mice: Sex differences in vulnerability to stress and predicting severity of anxiogenic response from the stress experience. Physiological and Behavior 15;88(1-2), 12-29.

Adamec, R., Strasser, K., Blundell, J., Burton , P., McKay, D. (2006). Protein synthesis and the mechanisms of lasting change in anxiety induced by severe stress. Behavioral Brain Research 167(2), 270-86.

Adamec, R., Blundell, J., and Burton , P. (2006). Relationship of the predatory attack experience to neural plasticity, pCREB expression and neuroendocrine response. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews 30(3), 356-75.

Adamec, R., Blundell, J., and Burton , P. (2005). Neural circuit changes mediating lasting brain and behavioral response to predator stress. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews 29(8), 1225-1241.

Adamec, R., Blundell, J., & Burton , P. (2005). Role of NMDA receptors in the lateralized potentiation of amygdala afferent and efferent neural transmission produced by predator stress. Physiology and Behavior 86(12), 75-91.

Adamec, R., Blundell, J & Burton, P. (2004). Anxiolytic effects of kindling: Role of anatomical location of the kindled focus in response to kindling of the right basolateral amygdala. Brain Research 1024(1-2), 44-58.

Adamec, R., Blundell, J., & Burton , P. (2003). Phosphorylated cyclic AMP response element binding protein expression induced in the periaqueductal gray by predator stress: Its relationship to the stress experience, behavior and limbic neural plasticity. Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry 27(8), 1243-1267.

Adamec, R.E., Blundell, J., & Collins, A. (2001). Neural plasticity and stress induced changes in defense in the rat. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews 25(7-8), 721-744.

Book Chapters:

Adamec, R., Blundell, J., Strasser, K., Burton , P. (2006). Mechanisms of lasting change in anxiety induced by severe stress. In: Sato, N. & Pitman, R. (Eds), PTSD: Brain Mechanisms and Clinical Implications. Springer-Werlag, Tokyo : Springer-Verlag, 2006. 61-81.

Adamec, R., Shallow, T., Blundell, J., and Burton . (2005) "Contribution of Pre Kindling Affective State to Hemispheric Differences in the Effects of Basolateral Amygdala Kindling on Anxiety." Ed. C. Corcoran and S. L. Moshe. Amsterdam : Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishing. 263-71.

* Equal Contribution

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