Enhancements    

Katherine Serafine

 
216B
Psychology
El Paso Texas, 79968
Homekmserafine2@utep.edu
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Curriculum Vitae

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NETWORKS

Katherine Serafine
Assistant Professor, Psychology

Research in Dr. Serafine’s Behavioral Pharmacology Laboratory focuses on the different factors that contribute to individual differences in vulnerability to drug abuse. The Behavioral Pharmacology Laboratory uses preclinical models to investigate how age, sex and diet impact sensitivity to drugs of abuse like cocaine. Drug sensitivity is assessed using behavioral pharmacological models ranging from unconditioned behavior (e.g., locomotion) to more complex behaviors using classical and operant conditioning (e.g., conditioned place preference, drug discrimination, or intravenous self-administration). Students in the laboratory receive hands on training on how to conduct behavioral experiments that help answer important questions about abuse vulnerability. Dr. Serafine’s current research interests include studying how diets high in fat or sugar change individual sensitivity to cocaine and other drugs that act on dopamine systems, as well as the impact of diet on sensitivity to alcohol. Dr. Serafine is also interested in considering differential impact of age, sex and diet on sensitivity to prescription drugs such as antidepressants and drugs used to treat obesity.

KEYWORDS

  1. Animal models
  2. Behavioral pharmacology
  3. Metabolic syndrome
  4. Neuroscience
  5. Psychopharmacology

UTEP STRATEGIC AREAS

  1. Health & Biomedical Sciences and Engineering
  2. Cross-cutting: Emerging Technologies: Information Technology, Biotechnology & Nanotechnology