Welcome to The Barker Lab

The Barker Lab is part of the Department of Psychology and the Brain Health Institute at Rutgers University. Our research applies cutting edge technologies to interrogate neural circuits involved in psychiatric disorders. Our goal is to better understand the maladaptive processes that affect the brains of individuals afflicted with drug addiction and comorbid mental disorders with the hope of advancing more effective treatment strategies. The lab applies anatomical techniques to define the types of neurons that comprise specific brain pathways, calcium imaging and electrophysiological techniques to record the types of information encoded by these circuits, and optogenetic or chemogenetic technologies to manipulate circuit-level activity.