My research career has centered on the study of psychiatric disorders using animal models. The majority of my work has focused on attempting to better understand the underlying neurobiological, developmental, and molecular bases of addictions. More specifically, I study the acute and neuroadaptive changes associated with substance use in brain areas that are thought to mediate drug and alcohol intake. I am particularly interested in the behavioral and neurobiological consequences of adolescent co-abuse of alcohol and nicotine in alcohol-preferring rats. More recently, I have been developing new behavioral models of addiction using the nematode C. elegans. The long-term goals of all of these projects are to identify new pharmacotherapies and/or points of intervention to effectively treat addictions.