All Group Leaders 

Neural circuits and behaviour in neurodevelopmental disorders

Marija-Magdalena  Petrinovic

Marija-Magdalena Petrinovic

Lecturer

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Overview

Our group is particularly interested in two questions: How is genetic information translated into neural circuits and behavior? How are these processes affected in neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders? We use an integrative approach combining genetics, molecular biology, neuroimaging, electrophysiology, optogenetic fMRI, pharmacological and behavioral studies to address these questions.

Our research concerns how neural circuits, once established, control various aspects of our behavior and how their malfunction results in behavioral alterations that are hallmarks of autism. Understanding the development and organization of neural circuits, the ways they mediate behaviour, and identifying the causal changes that lead to behavioural aberrations is crucial for developing a new generation of therapeutics and traversing the “bench-to-bedside” divide.

Selected publications

Harmeier A, Meyer CA, Staempfli A, Casagrande F, Petrinovic MM, Zhang YP, Künnecke B, Iglesias A, Höner OP, Hoener MC (2018) How Female Mice Attract Males: A Urinary Volatile Amine Activates a Trace Amine-Associated Receptor That Induces Male Sexual Interest. Frontiers in Pharmacology. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2018.00924 9: 924
Horder J, Petrinovic MM, Mendez MA, Bruns A, Takumi T, Spooren W, Barker GJ, Künnecke B, Murphy DG (2018) Glutamate and GABA in autism spectrum disorder-a translational magnetic resonance spectroscopy study in man and rodent models. Transl Psychiatry 8: 106
Petrinovic MM, Hankov G, Schroeter A, Bruns A, Rudin M, von Kienlin M, Künnecke B, Mueggler T (2016) A novel anesthesia regime enables neurofunctional studies and imaging genetics across mouse strains. Sci Rep 6: 24523
Tully J, Petrinovic MM (2016) Acetaminophen study yields new insights into neurobiological underpinnings of empathy. J Neurophysiol 117: 1844-1846
Durieux AM, Horder J, Petrinovic MM (2015) Neuroligin-2 and the tightrope of excitation/inhibition balance in the prefrontal cortex. J Neurophysiol 115: 5-7
Montani L, Petrinovic MM (2014) Targeting axonal regeneration: the growth cone takes the lead. J Neurosci 34: 4443-4
Petrinovic MM, Künnecke B (2013) Neuroimaging endophenotypes in animal models of autism spectrum disorders: lost or found in translation? Psychopharmacology (Berl) 231: 1167-89