John G. McHaffie, PhD
Medical College of Virginia/Virginia Commonwealth University, 1984
The brain is composed of a host of different regions, each seemingly devoted to specific functions. Yet, in order to produce even relatively 'simple' behaviors, like noticing a bird flying across the evening sky, requires the coordinated activity of many structures through complex neural networks. In an effort to determine how the interplay of multiple brain regions leads to adaptive behaviors, our laboratory is currently focused on understanding the neuroanatomical and physiological relationships among the cortex, midbrain superior colliculus, and the basal ganglia. Our long term goal is to facilitate the development of therapies for ameliorating neurological deficits in patients.
A second enduring interest has been in the physiology of nociception and how adaptive and non-adaptive pain behaviors are produced. Early work emphasized traditional electrophysiological recording while more recent efforts involve human imaging and psychophysics techniques.
Zeidan F, KT Martucci, RA Kraft, NS Gordon, JG McHaffie, and RC Coghill (2011) Brain mechanisms supporting modulation of pain by meditation. J. Neurosci. 31(14): 5540-5548.
Jiang H, BE Stein, and JG McHaffie (2009) Cortical lesion-induced visual hemineglect is prevented by NMDA antagonist pretreatment. J. Neurosci. 29(21): 6917-6925.
Fuentes-Santamaria V, JC Alvarado, BE Stein and JG McHaffie (2008) Cortex contacts both output neurons and nitrergic interneurons in the superior colliculus: Direct and indirect routes for multisensory integration. Cerebral Cortex 18: 1640-1652.
McHaffie JG, TR Stanford, BE Stein, V Coizet and P Redgrave (2005) Subcortical loops through the basal ganglia. Trends Neurosci. 28(8): 401-407.
Koyama T, J McHaffie, P Laurienti, and R Coghill (2005) The subjective experience of pain: Where expectations become reality. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 102: 12950-12955.
Jiang H, BE Stein, and JG McHaffie (2003) Opposing basal ganglia processes shape midbrain visuomotor activity bilaterally. Nature 423: 982-986.
Coghill RC, JG McHaffie and Y-F Yen (2003) Neural correlates of inter-individual differences in the subjective experience of pain. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 100: 8538-8542.