Life in Charleston and the Lab
|Left to right : Neringa Stankevicuite, Alexander Smith, Sade Spencer, Cassie Gipson, Peter Kalivas, Maddy Athreya, Jasper Heinsbroek, Constanza Garcia Keller, Michael Scofield, Douglas Roberts Wolfe.|
Life in the Kalivas lab is very interconnected with the other addiction oriented research labs at MUSC, of which there are many. This allows postdocs and students to range across a full spectrum of cutting-edge biotechnologies as they proceed with their research programs. This strongly collaborative environment is supported by 3 NIH-funded addiction centers (see below) that many of the faculty partake in, as well as two addiction institutional training grants to support postdocs and students. The technologies currently ongoing that you can potentially apply to your projects range from behavioral (drug self-administration, cognitive testing) to systems (cellular morphology and circuitry; optogenetic and DREADD manipulation of circuits) to molecular approaches. In addition, we have strong collaborations with clinicians at MUSC who manage large trials with cocaine, alcohol, nicotine and marijuana addicts.
The Kalivas lab typically contains 2 graduate students and up to 8 postdoctoral fellows, visiting scientists or research-track faculty. In addition, the laboratory contains a number of undergraduate students who are completing their undergraduate degree at the College of Charleston. The Neuroscience degree requires that all students conduct a research thesis, making our laboratory a prime location for highly motivated students to spend a year conducting research in collaboration with our postdoctoral fellows or graduate students.
Neurobiology of Addiction Research Center (NARC) http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/neurosciences/research/NARC/
Alcohol Research Center (ARC) http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/arc/index.htm
SCOR on Sex and Gender Factors Affecting Women’s Health http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/psychiatry/research/cns/SCOR/Home
The Department of Neurosciences and the Neurosciences Institute
The laboratory is located in the Department of Neurosciences, which has been ranked between 2nd and 7th nationally in research grant awards from the NIH since 2008. The Neurosciences Institute manages a graduate program in neuroscience offering Ph.D., M.D./Ph.D. and M.S. degrees. There are over 30 graduate students at any given time in the program. The department also contains over 40 postdoctoral fellows, and two T32 institutional training grants support both pre- and postdoctoral trainees, as well as clinical research fellows. The Neurosciences Institute also sponsors an annual retreat, often held at one of the local beach venues (below).
Charleston is a city of approximately 500,000 in the metro area and contains three undergraduate campuses (College of Charleston, Citadel and Charleston Southern) a law school (Charleston Law) and the Medical University of South Carolina (containing colleges of Medicine, Graduate Studies, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Nursing and Health Professions). The city is accordingly youthful, with a large district containing bars, pubs and excellent restaurants. Charleston is the intellectual and artistic center of South Carolina, with the annual Spoleto Arts Festival a three-week display of local and international artistic and musical talent. Charleston is surrounded by water, and many beaches are within 20 min of downtown.