The Christie Lab

Welcome to the Christie Laboratory at the University of Victoria, which is situated on the traditional territories of the Lekwungen speaking peoples of Vancouver Island.

The Christie Lab studies a variety of forms of neuroplasticity, including synaptic plasticity, metaplasticity, and neurogenesis, to better understand both the intrinsic processing capacities of the brain, how it responds to injury, and it’s capacity for self-repair. In our basic science lab we use an array of specialized techniques, including electrophysiology, immunohistochemistry and protein analysis, and are always seeking to improve our technical skill sets. In the Concussion Lab, we have a number of patient-orientated research projects where we work directly with individuals that have experienced mild to moderate brain injury. We also work with sports teams, schools, and aging populations. 

We have a diverse and inclusive team of researchers. One my passions is providing opportunities for underrepresented minorities, and we regularly mentor undergraduates in the lab. A significant proportion of these students go on to graduate studies, MD or other professional degree training programs.  I believe part of my job is to assist all trainees in achieving success. Towards this end, I helped to found the University of Victoria’s graduate program in Neuroscience, and have served on a variety of committees that promote inclusive training.

Our funding comes from a wide variety of sources, including CIHR, NSERC, FRAXA, FXRFC, Azrieli, NIH, CFI, and generous donations from individuals in the community who support our work. 

For individuals looking to volunteer in studies in the Concussion Lab, feel free to contact us at

Dr. Brian Christie

Contact Us

Brian Christie, PhD
Professor, Neuroscience


Lab: MSB 250


Office:  250-472-4244


Funding News:

List of projects we have recently recieved funding for:

MITACS Accelerate - From stress to success: Investigating the effects of a 3D-multiple object tracking intervention on markers of oxidative stress in brain injury survivors. (MSc Trainee Jamie Morrison)

The primary goal of this project is to examine if a three-dimensional multiple object tracking (3D-MOT) cognitive training intervention can improve global outcomes relating to disability in people with chronic moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBI can result in physical, emotional, and social challenges that may drastically impair an individual’s quality of life. Accessible and effective therapeutic interventions for symptom management and recovery in brain injury survivors are lacking. 3D-MOT is a promising therapeutic tool for improved cognition that can be administered at home with a low-cost. It is important to investigate how these accessible tools can impact outcomes in TBI survivors, and therefore we aim to test the hypothesis that 3D-MOT improves functional outcomes and quality of life in people with chronic moderate to severe TBI. In collaboration with the Victoria Brain Injury Society, our goal is to conduct a randomized controlled trial with a five-week at-home 3D-MOT intervention. Participants will undergo standardized assessments and blood collection at baseline, 1-week, and 1-month following the 3D-MOT intervention. Secondary goals of this study include quantifying serum markers of oxidative stress and inflammation, along with cognitive performance, in hopes of better understanding and validating 3D-MOT as a therapeutic intervention for TBI.

MITACS Accelerate - The Neural Mechanisms Underlying the Effect of a Standardized Equine Assisted Therapy Intervention on Stress Resilience and Executive Function in Autism. (PhD Trainee Rebecca Phillips; co-supervised with Dr. Sarah Macoun)

A growing body of evidence offers a broad proof of concept for the efficacy of equine assisted therapy (EAT) in the treatment of autism, with studies reporting numerous cognitive, social, and emotional benefits. However, there is a need to expand upon current findings on the effect of EAT on the underlying neural mechanisms of stress resilience and executive function. Prior research shows that chronic stress and anxiety is increased in autism compared with typically developing individuals and is associated with aspects of cognitive dysfunction. Further, stress resilience is shown to be a dynamic adaptive process which can be learned. Training to cope with stress builds resilience through learning and memory mechanisms. Horses are particularly well suited to helping people learn as they provide a relational form of biofeedback, primarily through movement, body language, visual and tactile signals. EAT provides a potential source of co-regulation and an opportunity for learning conscious control of nervous system regulation and the stress response, which can enhance therapeutic and learning outcomes. A randomized controlled study with children and youth is expected to demonstrate neuroplasticity, improved stress resilience and cognitive control, and decreased stress response following EAT training. The anticipated significance of the research is that the findings will establish effects of EAT on task-related performance such as attention, emotion, and cognition in autism. The findings will also contribute to development and testing of theoretical frameworks for a specific EAT intervention focused on stress resilience called CalmwardTM developed by the partner organization, Forward Equestrian Inc. Interventions will be developed into standardized practical programming for children and youth with autism, and related health services and products for commercialization.

NHMRC - Brain Injury in intimate partner violence: Insight into a silent pandemic. (PhD Trainee Justin Brand; co-supervised with Dr. Sandy Shultz)

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a serious societal and medical issue worldwide that has severe and long-term impacts on the lives of women. In Australia, IPV affects one in six women and is the leading cause of preventable death, disability, and illness in Australian women aged 15 to 44. Approximately one Australian woman is killed every week by a male intimate partner. One in five assault hospitalisations are IPV related, with women making up over 70% of hospitalised survivors. Over 60% of these hospitalisations involve an injury to the head and/or neck. This cohort likely constitutes the “tip of the iceberg”, with many survivors of IPV never accessing the medical care they need. Unfortunately, the prevalence, severity, and frequency of IPV has been exacerbated since the outbreak of COVID-19 and the consequential lockdown periods.

Of the many challenges faced by IPV survivors, traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a result of the physical attacks is likely one of the most significant – with both short- and long-term impacts. Although initial studies suggest there is evidence of brain injury in 60-92% of IPV survivors, the nature of this brain damage and how it contributes to their lived experience has been remarkably understudied. TBI falls on a spectrum, ranging from mild to severe, with mild TBI (mTBI) being the most common in the general population as well as in IPV. There has been a substantial surge in mTBI (e.g. concussion) research in the past decade, however this has largely focused in the context of mTBI in athletes and military personnel. These studies are useful in the sense that there is now a growing consensus that mTBIs can result in debilitating and persisting neurological issues. However, it cannot be assumed that these findings are generalisable to the brain injury that occurs in IPV. The pathophysiology of brain injury that occurs in IPV is likely unique compared to other contexts because in IPV the mTBI typically occurs in combination with non-fatal strangulation (NFS),  and this added hypoxic/ischemic insult may exacerbate mTBI pathophysiology. Moreover, the injuries often occur in the context of psychological trauma, which may further worsen the effects.

The poor understanding of the consequences and burden of mTBI in IPV is a major knowledge gap that is imperative to address if we are to improve the care and outcomes for IPV survivors. Advanced neuroimaging (e.g. MRI and PET), blood biomarkers, and neuropsychological assessment are clinically applicable methods that are sensitive to the pathophysiological and functional consequences of mTBI, and can be used to bridge the knowledge gap pertaining to brain injury in IPV. With that said, the many confounding variables in this population make it difficult to adequately investigate the effects of mTBI and/or NFS purely in patients. Therefore, we have developed the first rodent model of combined mTBI and NFS to provide translational insight into this question.

MITACS Accelerate - Can low-dose psilocybin have therapeutic value in treating and preventing depression and anxiety? (PhD Trainee Alanna Kit)

The goal of this study is to discover if chronic low dose psilocybin reduces anxiety and depressive-like behaviours in a chronic unpredictable stress test model for rodents by enhancing adult neurogenesis. Psilocybin has potential therapeutic value for a number of neurological disorders, including depression, anxiety, neurodegeneration, PTSD, and traumatic brain-injury.  It has been hypothesized that its anti-inflammatory actions may contribute to its efficacy, but the actual mechanism of action remains unclear. The vagus nerve is one of the primary bidirectional routes of communication between the gut and the brain and there is potential for it to activate both serotonin receptors and pathways involved in inflammation and the brain. We will test this hypothesis using an animal model of depression (chronic unpredictable stress; CUS), that is associated with as changes in animal behaviour indicative of depression, an increase in inflammatory biomarkers, as well as reductions in the structure and function of the hippocampus, a brain region involved in learning, memory, and emotional processing. Psilocybin has antidepressant-like behavioural effects and can promote neurogenesis, dendritic spine plasticity and the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the hippocampus through activation of the 5HT2A serotonin receptor pathway. Our goal is to determine if low-dose administration of psilocybin prior to exposure to CUS has neuroprotective effects, and will reduce the impact of CUS on behavioural, structural and functional measures. To better understand the potential therapeutic effects of sustained release chronic low dose psilocybin on these levels, more investigation is required to understand the mechanistic action at which synaptic neuroplasticity occurs in specific regions of the brain and the signalling cascade involved.

Bringing focus to the invisible injury: Defining a role for microbleeds and microglia in mild traumatic brain injury. $967,725 over 5 years.

Concussions are a form of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), often called the “unseen injury”, because of the lack of obvious damage. As a result, many individuals suffer repeated concussions, often in short time spans. In some sports, like hockey and football, awareness is growing that repeated sub-concussive blows to the head are routinely incurred in practices and games. Although many of these impacts do not result in a diagnosis of concussion, there is a growing appreciation that both concussions and sub-concussive impacts can negatively impact cognitive function in the developing brain, and that repeated concussions (r-mTBI) can have long-term detrimental effects for cognition in elderly populations. Despite these concerns, few laboratories have systematically studied r-mTBI in a preclinical model that properly mimics the human condition. We have recently developed a model that enables us to accurately examine r-mTBI and understand how the brain responds to repeated mTBI. Because significant structural damage does not occur in mTBI, our focus is on whether there is damage to small blood vessels in the brain. These vessels are below the threshold of resolution for magnetic resonance imaging, but can be resolved using high resolution microscopy. When damaged, these vessels can release a compound in the blood called fibrinogen. Fibrinogen is normally important for clotting, but can also initiate an inflammatory process involving brain microglia that negatively impacts neurons, and impairs learning and memory processes. The results of the proposed work will help us to better understand the mechanisms involved in mTBI; how they directly impact brain function, and increase our understanding of how r-mTBI early in life could negatively impact individuals as they age. More importantly, this work will enable us to determine the therapeutic value of modulating fibrinogen’s effects in the brain to help reduce the negative impact of r-mTBI on cognition.

Drinking with Mary Jane: Understanding how consuming alcohol and marijuana during pregnancy impacts the developing brain. $100,000 for 1 year

With the relaxation of cannabis restrictions across North America, a growing proportion of young adults (19-30 yrs of age) are reporting the Simultaneous use of Alcohol and Cannabis. The use of legal/illicit drugs in this age group is common, with cannabis being the most commonly used drug by pregnant women, and there are indications are that this trend will continue to rise. This is particularly true during periods of crises, like the current Covid-19 pandemic, when substance abuse issues increase significantly. The combined use of alcohol and cannabis also increases the risk of unplanned pregnancies significantly , and the 19-30 year old age demographic coincides with the peak fertility period for females. Although the prevalence rates for alcohol and cannabis use are likely to rise, the effects of combined prenatal ethanol and cannabis exposure on the developing brain remain poorly understood. Given our extensive history in using animal models to examine sex differences in FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders), and the role of cannabinoids in synaptic plasticity, our research team is in a unique position to contribute significantly to the understanding of how alcohol and cannabis exposure, alone or in combination, can differentially affect brain development in both sexes. In particular, this proposal also offers a creative means to new vapor chamber administration protocols to assess how alcohol and cannabis exposure during pregnancy effects the structure and function of the developing hippocampus. This is a brain region known to be involved in learning and memory processes, and it is important to understand how prenatal exposure impacts brain development in a sex specific fashion. In addition, we will also look at decision making processes in these offspring as they enter the adolescent period, to better understand how exposure early in life affects addictive behaviors later in life.

Latest News:

Congratulations Katie Neale and Team!

Congratulations to Katie Neale and the team for having their publication “Repeated mild traumatic brain injury causes sex-specific increases in cell proliferation and inflammation in juvenile rats” accepted in the Journal of Neuroinflammation (IF 9.2). What a great way to show off the amazing data set that was collected for Katie’s MSc. Also wishing the best of luck to her with her studies in medical school at the University of Limerick.

Congratulations Dr. Hannah Reid!

Dr. Reid recently completed her doctoral thesis on the effects of prenatal THC exposure on the rat hippocampus.

Christie Lab at SFN 2022!

Highlights from the Christie Lab’s visit to the Society for Neuroscience conference in San Diego.

PhD candidate Hannah Reid with her poster on the effects of prenatal alcohol and THC exposure.


PhD Candidate Taylor Snowden presenting her work on 3D-MOT as a cognitive intervention for adults with moderate to severe brain injuries. 

MSc Student Allyson Gross with her poster on changes in synaptic plasticity following repeated mTBIs.

MSc student Irene Shkolnikov with her poster on the potential therapeutic effects of AdipoRon in Fragile X Syndrome.

Fiona Ramnaraign presenting her research on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and choline and exercise intervention.

Having dinner with Dr. Jennifer Thomas’s Lab!

Congratulations to Our Recent Graduates!

Dr. Erin Gräfe recently defended her work on fetal alcohol exposure.

Congratulations to Our Recent Graduates!

Allyson Gross completed her master’s thesis on changes in synaptic plasticity following repeated mTBIs. 


Click here to view Jamie Morrison's wonderful JCURA 2022 poster!

SHINE a light on concussion awareness: efficacy of neuroeducation program in youth sports

Weekly lab meeting with our collaborators at the Dr. Thomas lab
Dr. Christie and Dr. Thomas lab meeting
The happy members of Dr. Christie and Dr. Thomas labs.

Video tutorial series now live on YouTube

Christie Lab Members

 Principal Investigator, Postdoctoral Fellows, and Graduate Students

Research Assistants & Technicians 

Undergraduate Researchers  

Christie Lab Alumni

Postdoctoral Fellows

Dr. Crystal Acosta (2022-2024)

Dr. Jonathan Thacker  (2018-2021)

Dr. Luis Bettio (2017-2021)

Dr. Christine Fontaine (2019-2020)

Dr. Craig Hutton (2018-2019)

Dr. Joana Gil-Mohapel (2009-Present)

Dr. Anna Patten (2013-2015)

Dr. Sonata Yau (2012-2015)

Dr. Mariana Vetrici (2011-2014)

Dr. Patricia Brocardo (2009-2013)

Dr. Helle Sickman (2010-2013)

Dr. Van Redila (2004-2006) 

Dr. Weining Zhang (2004-2007)

Dr. David Froc (2002-2004) 

PhD Students

Dr. Hannah Reid (c. 2023)

Dr. Erin Gräfe (c. 2023) 

Dr. Juan Trivino-Peredes (c. 2021)

Dr. Alicia Meconi (c. 2021)

Dr. Christina Pinar (c. 2019)

Dr. Christine Fontaine (c. 2018)

Dr. Mohamed Ghilan (c. 2015)

Dr. Anna Patten (c. 2013)

Dr. Jennifer Helfer (c. 2012)

Dr. Timal Kannangara (c. 2012)

Dr. Andrea Titterness (c. 2010)

Dr. Brennan Eadie (c. 2010)

Dr. Cristina Vasuta (c. 2010)

Dr. Julie Robillard (c. 2008)  

MSc Students

Irene Shkolnikov (c. 2023)

Allyson Gross (c. 2023)

Katie Neale (c. 2020)

Scott Sawchuk (c. 2019)

Melissa Clarkson (c. 2018)

Allison Rodway (c. 2018)

Erica Shaw (c. 2018)

Kim Oslund (c. 2017)

Hillary Cullen (c. 2017)

Ryan Wortman (c. 2017)

Emily White (c. 2015)

Crystal Bostrom (c. 2012)

Namat Majess (c. 2012)

Jessica Simpson (c. 2011)

Fanny Boehme (c. 2010)

Ross Petersen (c. 2009)

James Shin (c. 2009)

Pamela Parkinson (c. 2008)

Alina Webber (c. 2006)

Carl Ernst (c. 2005)

Brennan Eadie (c. 2004)

Maric Tse (c. 2004)

Joel Farmer (c. 2001) 

Undergraduate Students

Victoria Greene (2022-2024), Honours Student

Rachael Mordaunt (2023-2024)

Emily Bosdachin (2021 – 2023), Honours Student, Technician

Gabriela Bergmane (2023), MITACS Globalink Research Intern

John Dash (2022-2023)

Annika Willoughby (2021-2023), NSERC Recipient

Peri Donghy (2021-2023)

Charuta Sahasrabudhe (2021 -2023), JCURA Recipient

Adam Gheis (2021-2023)

Madison Yanish (2021-2023)

Emily Funnekotter (2021-2023) 


Search by Research Topic

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  1.  Prenatal ethanol and cannabis exposure have sex- and region-specific effects on somatostatin and neuropeptide Y interneurons in the rat hippocampus. Reid, H. M. O., Trepanier, O., Gross, A., Poberezhnyk, P., Snowden, T., Conway, K., Breit, K. R., Rodriguez, C., Thomas, J. D., & Christie, B. R. (2024). Alcohol, clinical & experimental research, 10.1111/acer.15350.

In Progress:

  • Developmental ethanol exposure produces deficits in long-term potentiation in vivo that persist following postnatal choline supplementation. Titterness et al., in press
  • Adiponectin rescues synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus of a mouse model of fragile X syndrome. Thacker et al., in press
  • Optimizing GABAA receptor antagonism for the induction of long-term potentiation in the mouse and rat dentate gyrus in vitro. Eyolfson et al., revision under review
  • Brain Changes: A Scoping Review of Mindfulness-Based Training in Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation. Snowden et al., revision under review
  • A systematic review of studies on GRM7 deficient patients. Revision under review
  • The effect of traumatic brain injury on learning and memory: A synaptic focus. Eyolfson et al., under review
  1. Assessing Changes in Synaptic Plasticity Using an Awake Closed-Head Injury Model of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury.  BR Christie, A Gross, A Willoughby, E Grafe, J Brand, E Bosdachin, H Reid, C Acosta, E Eyolfson. Journal of Visualized Experiments (191), e64592. 
  2. Women are Taking the Hit: Examining the Unique Consequences of Cannabis Use Across the Female Lifespan. EL Gräfe, HMO Reid, I Shkolnikov, K Conway, A Kit, C Acosta, BR Christie. Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology, 101076.
  3. Stress and traumatic brain injury: An inherent bi-directional relationship with temporal and synergistic complexities. J Brand, SJ McDonald, JR Gawryluk, BR Christie, SR Shultz. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 105242
  4. Reelin rescues behavioural, electrophysiological, and molecular metrics of a chronic stress phenotype in a similar manner to ketamine. Johnston JN, Allen J, Shkolnikov I, Sanchez-Lafuente CL, Reive BS, Scheil K, Liang S, Christie BR, Kalynchuk LE, Caruncho HJ. eNeuro. 2023 Aug 11;10(8):ENEURO.0106-23.2023. doi: 10.1523/ENEURO.0106-23.2023. Print 2023 Aug. PMID: 37550058 
  5. Repeated mild traumatic brain injury causes sex-specific increases in cell proliferation and inflammation in juvenile rats.  KJ Neale, HMO Reid, B. Sousa, E. McDonagh, J. Morrison, S. Shultz, E. Eyolfson, BR Christie. Journal of Neuroinflammation. 10.1186/s12974-023-02916-5
  6. A protocol for remote cognitive training developed for use in clinical populations during the Covid-19 pandemic. Snowden T, Ohlhauser L, Morrison J, Faubert J, Gawryluk J, Christie BR. Neurotrauma Rep. 2023 Aug 14;4(1):522-532. doi: 10.1089/neur.2023.0009. eCollection 2023.PMID:37645472
  7. Progranulin is an FMRP target that influences macroorchidism but not behaviour in a mouse model of Fragile-X Syndrome. Life B, Bettio LEB, Gantois I, Christie BR, Leavitt BR. Curr Res Neurobiol. 2023 Jun 16;5:100094. doi: 10.1016/j.crneur.2023.100094. eCollection 2023.PMID: 37416094.
  1. Postnatal Choline Supplementation Rescues Deficits in Synaptic Plasticity Following Prenatal Ethanol Exposure.
    EL Grafe, MMM Wade, CE Hodson, JD Thomas, BR Christie. Nutrients 14 (10), 2004
  2. Brain changes: aerobic exercise for traumatic brain injury rehabilitation.
    T Snowden, J Morrison, M Boerstra, E Eyolfson, C Acosta, E Grafe, H Reid, … Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 17
  3. A hybrid thread-based temperature and humidity sensor for continuous wound monitoring.
    S Hasanpour, L Karperien, T Walsh, M Jahanshahi, Z Hadisi, KJ Neale, … Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical 370, 132414
  4. Repeated Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Impairs Long-Term Depression Of Synaptic Efficacy In The Hippocampus.
    C Pinar, C Fontaine, J Trivino-Paredes, A Gross, B Christie. Journal of Neurotrauma 39 (11-12), A79-A79
  5. Train Your Brain: A Patient-Partnered Study To Determine If Three-Dimensional Multiple-Object Tracking Improves Cognitive Function In Individuals With Moderate To Severe Brain …
    T Snowden, L Ohlhauser, B Mayoh, J Morrison, S Waddington, …JOURNAL OF NEUROTRAUMA 39 (11-12), A14-A15
  6. Sex-Specific Effects Of Postnatal Choline Supplementation On Juvenile LTP
    EL Grafe, JD Thomas, BR Christie. Alcoholism-Clinical And Experimental Research 46, 199a-199a
  7. Prenatal Alcohol And THC Exposure Alters Interneurons And Microglia In The Hippocampus Of Adult Rats
    H Reid, A Gross, P Poberezhnyk, A Hinde, O Trepanier, T Snowden, … Alcoholism-Clinical And Experimental Research 46, 199a-199a

1: Effects of prenatal ethanol exposure on choline-induced long-term depression in the hippocampus  

EL Grafe, CJ Fontaine, JD Thomas, BR Christie. Journal of Neurophysiology 126 (5), 1622-1634

               2: Prenatal alcohol and cannabis exposure can have opposing                   and region-specific effects on parvalbumin interneuron          .                     numbers in the hippocampus

H Reid, T Snowden, I Shkolnikov, K Breit, C Rodriguez, JD Thomas, BR Christie. Alcoholism – Clinical and Experimental Research

.          3: Exercise hormone irisin is a critical regulator of cognitive                   function

MR Islam, S Valaris, MF Young, EB Haley, R Luo, SF Bond, S Mazuera, RR Kitchen, BJ Caldarone, LEB Bettio, BR Christie, AB Schmider, RJ Soberman, A Besnard, MP Jedrychowski, H Kim, H Tu, E Kim, SH Choi, RE Tanzi, BM Spiegelman, CD Wrann. Nature Metabolism 3 (8), 1058-1070

4: Chronic AdipoRon treatment mimics the effects of physical   excercise on restoring hippocampal neuroplasticity in diabetic mice 

TH Lee, BR Christie, K Lin, PMF Siu, L Zhang, T Yuan, P Komal,   A Xu, KF So, S Yau. Molecular Neurobiology 58, 4666-4681

  5: Prenatal alcohol and cannabis exposure in rat parvalbumin         interneurons. 

      H Reid, T Snowden, I Shkolnikov, K Breit, C Rodriguez, JD                  Thomas, BR Christie. Alcoholism – Clinical and                                         Experimental Research

   6: Prenatal alcohol and THC exposure alters interneuron               numbers in the hippocampus of adult rats

H Reid, A Gross, P Poberezhnyk, S Winger, A Hinde, T Snowden, I Shkolnikov, C Rodriguez, K Breit, JD Thomas, BR Christie. Alcoholism – Clinical and Experimental Research

.    7: Understanding Changes in Hippocampal Interneurons                 Subtypes in the Pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s Disease: A                     Systematic Review.                                                                                                 H Reid, N Chen-Mack, T Snowden, BR Christie


8: Unlocking the brain: A new method for Western blot protein detection from fixed brain tissue

JS Thacker, D Andersen, S Liang, N Zieniewicz, JS Trivino-Paredes, … Journal of Neuroscience Methods 348, 108995


9: Heading in the right direction: a critical review of studies examining the effects of heading in soccer players

T Snowden, H Reid, S Kennedy, R Kenny, A McQuarrie, L Stuart-Hill, … Journal of neurotrauma 38 (2), 169-188


10: AdipoRon Treatment Induces a Dose-Dependent Response in Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis

TH Lee, BR Christie, H van Praag, K Lin, PMF Siu, A Xu, KF So, S Yau. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 22 (4), 2068

11: Acute Δ9‐tetrahydrocannabinol prompts rapid changes in cannabinoid CB1 receptor immunolabeling and subcellular structure in CA1 hippocampus of young adult mice

IBD Río, N Puente, A Mimenza, A Ramos, M Serrano, L Lekunberri, … Journal of Comparative Neurology



1: Endocannabinoid receptors contribute significantly to multiple forms of long-term depression in the rat dentate gyrus.

Fontaine CJ, Gräfe EL, Pinar C, Bonilla-Del Río I, Grandes P, Christie BR. Learn Mem. 2020 Aug 17;27(9):380-389. doi: 10.1101/lm.050666.119. Print 2020 Sep.PMID: 32817304



2: Interplay between hormones and exercise on hippocampal plasticity across the lifespan.

Bettio LEB, Thacker JS, Rodgers SP, Brocardo PS,Christie BR, Gil-Mohapel J.Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis. 2020 Aug 1;1866(8):165821. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2020.165821. Epub 2020 May 3.PMID: 32376385 Review.


3: A Systematic Review of the Effects of Perinatal Alcohol Exposure and Perinatal Marijuana Exposure on Adult Neurogenesis in the Dentate Gyrus.

Reid HMO, Lysenko-Martin MR, Snowden TM, Thomas JD, Christie BR. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2020 Jun;44(6):1164-1174.                doi: 10.1111/acer.14332. Epub 2020 May 14.PMID: 32246781                Review.


4: Hippocampal cognitive impairment in juvenile rats after repeated mild traumatic brain injury.

Pinar C, Trivino-Paredes J, Perreault ST, Christie BR. Behav Brain Res. 2020 Jun 1;387:112585. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2020.112585. Epub 2020 Mar 14.PMID: 32184155


5: An Engineered Infected Epidermis Model for In Vitro Study of the Skin’s Pro-Inflammatory Response.

Jahanshahi M, Hamdi D, Godau B, Samiei E, Sanchez-Lafuente CL, Neale KJ, Hadisi Z, Dabiri SMH, Pagan E, Christie BR, Akbari M.Micromachines (Basel). 2020 Feb 23;11(2):227. doi: 10.3390/mi11020227.PMID: 32102205


6: Multiple Object Tracking Scores Predict Post-Concussion Status Years after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury.

Lysenko-Martin MR, Hutton CP, Sparks T, Snowden T,Christie BR. J Neurotrauma. 2020 Aug 15;37(16):1777-1787. doi: 10.1089/neu.2019.6842. Epub 2020 Apr 17.PMID: 31950862


7: Intermittent ethanol exposure during adolescence impairs cannabinoid type 1 receptor-dependent long-term depression and recognition memory in adult mice.

Peñasco S, Rico-Barrio I, Puente N, Fontaine CJ, Ramos A, Reguero L, Gerrikagoitia I, de Fonseca FR, Suarez J, Barrondo S, Aretxabala X, García Del Caño G, Sallés J, Elezgarai I, Nahirney PC,Christie BR, Grandes P.Neuropsychopharmacology. 2020 Jan;45(2):309-318. doi: 10.1038/s41386-019-0530-5. Epub 2019 Sep 30.PMID: 31569197



1: Impaired Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity in Juvenile Offspring Following Prenatal Ethanol Exposure

Fontaine CJ, Pinar C, Yang W, Pang AF, Suesser KE, Choi JSJ, Christie BR. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2019 Aug 6. doi:
10.1111/acer.14170. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 31386206.


2: Acute slice preparation for electrophysiology increases spine numbers equivalently in the male and female juvenile hippocampus: a DiI labeling study

Trivino-Paredes JS, Nahirney PC, Pinar C, Grandes P, Christie BR. J Neurophysiol. 2019 Sep 1;122(3):958-969. doi: 10.1152/jn.00332.2019. Epub 2019 Jul 3. PubMed PMID:31268808.


3: Endocannabinoid long-term depression revealed at medial perforant path excitatory synapses in the dentate gyrus

Peñasco S, Rico-Barrio I, Puente N, Gómez-Urquijo SM, Fontaine CJ,
Egaña-Huguet J, Achicallende S, Ramos A, Reguero L, Elezgarai I, Nahirney PC, Christie BR, Grandes P. Neuropharmacology. 2019
Jul 15;153:32-40. doi: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2019.04.020. Epub 2019 Apr 22. PubMed PMID: 31022405.



4: Mild Closed-Head Injury in Conscious Rats Causes Transient Neurobehavioral and Glial Disturbances: A Novel Experimental Model of Concussion. 

Pham L, Shultz SR, Kim HA, Brady RD, Wortman RC, Genders SG, Hale MW, O’Shea RD, Djouma E, van den Buuse M, Church JE, Christie BR, Drummond GR, Sobey CG, McDonald SJ. J Neurotrauma. 2019 Jul 15;36(14):2260-2271. doi: 10.1089/neu.2018.6169. Epub 2019 Apr 10. PubMed PMID: 30843474.


5: A Rapid Neurological Assessment Protocol for Repeated Mild Traumatic Brain Injury in Awake Rats.

Christie BR, Trivino-Paredes J, Pinar C, Neale KJ, Meconi A, Reid H, Hutton CP.Curr Protoc Neurosci. 2019 Sep;89(1):e80. doi: 10.1002/cpns.80.PMID: 31532919



6: Fragile-X Syndrome Is Associated With NMDA Receptor Hypofunction and Reduced Dendritic Complexity in Mature Dentate Granule Cells

Yau SY, Bettio L, Chiu J, Chiu C, Christie BR. Front Mol Neurosci. 2019 Jan 17;11:495. doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2018.00495. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 30705620; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6344420.


7: Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) affects the hippocampal levels of histone variant H2A.Z-2

Gretzinger TL, Tyagi M, Fontaine CJ, Cheema MS, González-Perez M, Freeman ME, Christie BR, Ausió J. Biochem Cell Biol. 2019 Aug; 97(4):431-436. doi: 10.1139/bcb-2018-0240. Epub 2019 Jan 3. PubMed PMID:30605356.


3: Effects of Voluntary Exercise on Cell Proliferation and Neurogenesis in the Dentate Gyrus of Adult FMR1 Knockout Mice

Pinar C, Yau SY, Sharp Z, Shamei A, Fontaine CJ, Meconi AL, Lottenberg CP, Christie BR. Brain Plast. 2018 Dec 26;4(2):185-195. doi: 10.3233/BPL-170052. PubMed PMID: 30598869; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6311353.


4: Diffusion MRI abnormalities in adolescent rats given repeated mild traumatic brain injury

Wortman RC, Meconi A, Neale KJ, Brady RD, McDonald SJ, Christie BR, Wright DK, Shultz SR. Ann Clin Transl Neurol. 2018 Oct 17;5(12):1588-1598. doi: 10.1002/acn3.667. eCollection 2018 Dec. PubMed PMID: 30564624; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6292182.


5: Impaired spatial processing in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome

Ghilan M, Bettio LEB, Noonan A, Brocardo PS, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Behav Brain Res. 2018 Sep 17;350:72-79. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2018.05.012. Epub 2018 May 17.PubMed PMID: 29778627.


6: Repeated mild traumatic brain injury can cause acute neurologic impairment without overt structural damage in juvenile rats

Meconi A, Wortman RC, Wright DK, Neale KJ, Clarkson M, Shultz SR, Christie BR. PLoS One. 2018 May 8;13(5):e0197187. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0197187. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 29738554; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5940222.


8: Adolescent ethanol intake alters cannabinoid type-1 receptor localization in astrocytes of the adult mouse hippocampus

Bonilla-Del Rίo I, Puente N, Peñasco S, Rico I, Gutiérrez-Rodrίguez A, Elezgarai I, Ramos A, Reguero L, Gerrikagoitia I, Christie BR, Nahirney P, Grandes P. Addict Biol. 2019 Mar;24(2):182-192. doi: 10.1111/adb.12585. Epub 2017 Nov 23. PubMed PMID:29168269.


7: Chronic minocycline treatment improves hippocampal neuronal structure, NMDA receptor function, and memory processing in Fmr1 knockout mice

Yau SY, Bettio L, Vetrici M, Truesdell A, Chiu C, Chiu J, Truesdell E, Christie BR. Neurobiol Dis. 2018 May;113:11-22. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2018.01.014. Epub 2018 Jan 31. PubMed PMID: 29367010.




1: Effects of Isx-9 and stress on adult hippocampal neurogenesis: Experimental considerations and future perspectives

Bettio LEB, Gil-Mohapel J, Patten AR, O’Rourke NF, Hanley RP, Gopalakrishnan K, Wulff JE, Christie BR. Neurogenesis (Austin). 2017 Jun 1;4(1):e1317692. doi: 10.1080/23262133.2017.1317692. eCollection 2017. PubMed PMID: 28656155; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5477711.


2: Revisiting the flip side: Long-term depression of synaptic efficacy in the hippocampus

Pinar C, Fontaine CJ, Triviño-Paredes J, Lottenberg CP, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2017 Sep;80:394-413. doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2017.06.001. Epub 2017 Jun 15. Review. PubMed PMID: 28624435.


3:The Effects of Ethanol Exposure During Distinct Periods of Brain Development on Oxidative Stress in the Adult Rat Brain

Brocardo PS, Gil-Mohapel J, Wortman R, Noonan A, McGinnis E, Patten AR, Christie BR. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2017 Jan;41(1):26-37. doi: 10.1111/acer.13266. Epub 2016 Nov 11. PubMed PMID:27862017.


4: Impaired bidirectional NMDA receptor dependent synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus of adult female Fmr1 heterozygous knockout mice

Yau SY, Bostrom CA, Chiu J, Fontaine CJ, Sawchuk S, Meconi A, Wortman RC,Truesdell E, Truesdell A, Chiu C, Hryciw BN, Eadie BD, Ghilan M, Christie BR. Neurobiol Dis. 2016Dec;96:261-270. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2016.09.012. Epub 2016 Sep 19. PubMed PMID: 27659109.


5: Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Produces Long-Lasting Deficits in Synaptic Plasticity in the Female Juvenile Hippocampus

White ER, Pinar C, Bostrom CA, Meconi A, Christie BR. J Neurotrauma. 2017 Mar 1;34(5):1111-1123. doi: 10.1089/neu.2016.4638. Epub 2016 Nov 21. PubMed PMID: 27735217.

6:The potential for animal models to provide insight into mild traumatic brain injury: Translational challenges and strategies

Shultz SR, McDonald SJ, Vonder Haar C, Meconi A, Vink R, van Donkelaar P,
Taneja C, Iverson GL, Christie BR. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2017 May;76(Pt B):396-414. doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.09.014. Epub 2016 Sep 19. Review. PubMed PMID: 27659125.




1: Chronic corticosterone administration reduces dendritic complexity in mature, but not young granule cells in the rat dentate gyrus

Yau SY, Li A, Tong JB, Bostrom C, Christie BR, Lee TM, So KF. Restor Neurol Neurosci. 2016 Sep 21;34(5):849-57. doi: 10.3233/RNN-160662. PubMed PMID: 27567758; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5345640.



2: ISX-9 can potentiate cell proliferation and neuronal commitment in the rat dentate gyrus

Bettio LE, Patten AR, Gil-Mohapel J, O’Rourke NF, Hanley RP, Kennedy S, Gopalakrishnan K, Rodrigues AL, Wulff J, Christie BR. Neuroscience.2016 Sep 22;332:212-22. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2016.06.042. Epub 2016 Jun 29. PubMed PMID: 27373772.


3: Chronic minocycline treatment improves social recognition memory in adult male Fmr1 knockout mice

Yau SY, Chiu C, Vetrici M, Christie BR. Behav Brain Res. 2016 Oct 1;312:77-83. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2016.06.015. Epub 2016 Jun 9. PubMed PMID: 27291517.


4: The effects of hormones and physical exercise on hippocampal structural plasticity

Triviño-Paredes J, Patten AR, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Front Neuroendocrinol. 2016 Apr;41:23-43. doi: 10.1016/j.yfrne.2016.03.001. Epub 2016 Mar 14. Review. PubMed PMID: 26989000.


5: The antidepressant-like effect of chronic guanosine treatment is associated with increased hippocampal neuronal differentiation

Bettio LE, Neis VB, Pazini FL, Brocardo PS, Patten AR, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR, Rodrigues AL. Eur J Neurosci. 2016 Apr;43(8):1006-15. doi: 10.1111/ejn.13172. Epub 2016 Feb 26. PubMed PMID: 26779605.


6: Prenatal ethanol exposure impairs temporal ordering behaviours in young adult rats

Patten AR, Sawchuk S, Wortman RC, Brocardo PS, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Behav Brain Res. 2016 Feb 15;299:81-9. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2015.11.032. Epub 2015 Dec 1. PubMed PMID: 26632335.


7: Effects of pre-natal alcohol exposure on hippocampal synaptic plasticity: Sex, age and methodological considerations

Fontaine CJ, Patten AR, Sickmann HM, Helfer JL, Christie BR. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2016 May;64:12-34. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.02.014. Epub 2016 Feb 22. Review. PubMed PMID: 26906760.


8: Hippocampal dysfunction and cognitive impairment in Fragile-X Syndrome

Bostrom C, Yau SY, Majaess N, Vetrici M, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2016 Sep;68:563-574. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.06.033. Epub 2016 Jun 23. Review. PubMed PMID: 27345143.


9: The Benefits of Exercise on Structural and Functional Plasticity in the Rodent Hippocampus of Different Disease Models

Patten AR, Yau SY, Fontaine CJ, Meconi A, Wortman RC, Christie BR. Brain Plast. 2015 Oct 9;1(1):97-127. doi: 10.3233/BPL-150016. Review. PubMed PMID: 29765836; PubMed Central PMCID:


10: Time-Course Analysis of Protein and Lipid Oxidation in the Brains of Yac128 Huntington’s Disease Transgenic Mice

Brocardo PS, McGinnis E, Christie BR, Gil-Mohapel J. Rejuvenation Res. 2016 Apr;19(2):140-8. doi: 10.1089/rej.2015.1736. Epub 2016 Feb 2. PubMed PMID: 26371883.



2015 and Earlier


1: Enhanced corticosteroid signaling alters synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus in mice lacking the fragile X mental retardation protein

Ghilan M, Hryciw BN, Brocardo PS, Bostrom CA, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Neurobiol Dis. 2015 May;77:26-34. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2015.01.008. Epub 2015 Feb 27. PubMed PMID: 25731748.



2:  Physical exercise-induced hippocampal neurogenesis and antidepressant effects are mediated by the adipocyte hormone adiponectin

Yau SY, Li A, Hoo RL, Ching YP, Christie BR, Lee TM, Xu A, So KF. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Nov 4;111(44):15810-5. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1415219111. Epub 2014 Oct 20. PubMed PMID: 25331877; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4226125.



1: A comparison of the different animal models of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and their use in studying complex behaviors

Patten AR, Fontaine CJ, Christie BR. Front Pediatr. 2014 Sep 3;2:93. doi: 10.3389/fped.2014.00093. eCollection 2014. Review. PubMed PMID: 25232537; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4153370.



2:Physical exercise-induced adult neurogenesis: a good strategy to prevent cognitive decline in neurodegenerative diseases?

Yau SY, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR, So KF. Biomed Res Int. 2014;2014:403120. doi: 10.1155/2014/403120. Epub 2014 Apr 9. Review. PubMed PMID: 24818140; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4000963.


3: Deletion of the NMDA receptor GluN2A subunit significantly decreases dendritic growth in maturing dentate granule neurons

Kannangara TS, Bostrom CA, Ratzlaff A, Thompson L, Cater RM, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. PLoS One. 2014 Aug 1;9(8):e103155. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0103155. eCollection 2014. PubMed PMID: 25083703; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4118862.


4: Prenatal ethanol exposure differentially affects hippocampal neurogenesis in the adolescent and aged brain

Gil-Mohapel J, Titterness AK, Patten AR, Taylor S, Ratzlaff A, Ratzlaff T, Helfer J, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2014 Jul 25;273:174-88. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2014.05.012. Epub 2014 May 15. PubMed PMID: 24846617.


5:YAC128 Huntington’s disease transgenic mice show enhanced short-term hippocampal synaptic plasticity early in the course of the disease

Ghilan M, Bostrom CA, Hryciw BN, Simpson JM, Christie BR, Gil-Mohapel J. Brain Res. 2014 Sep 18;1581:117-28. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2014.06.011. Epub 2014 Jun 17. PubMed PMID: 24949563.


6: Sustained running in rats administered corticosterone prevents the development of depressive behaviors and enhances hippocampal neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity without increasing neurotrophic factor levels

Yau SY, Li A, Zhang ED, Christie BR, Xu A, Lee TM, So KF. Cell Transplant. 2014;23(4-5):481-92. doi: 10.3727/096368914X678490. PubMed PMID: 24816445.


7: GluN2A-/- Mice Lack Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity in the Dentate Gyrus and Perform Poorly on Spatial Pattern Separation Tasks

Kannangara TS, Eadie BD, Bostrom CA, Morch K, Brocardo PS, Christie BR. Cereb Cortex. 2015 Aug;25(8):2102-13. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhu017. Epub 2014 Feb 18. PubMed PMID: 24554729; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4494024.


8: The role of oxidative stress in Huntington’s disease: are antioxidants good therapeutic candidates?

Gil-Mohapel J, Brocardo PS, Christie BR. Curr Drug Targets. 2014 Apr;15(4):454-68. Review. PubMed PMID: 24428525.





1: Omega-3 fatty acids can reverse the long-term deficits in hippocampal synaptic plasticity caused by prenatal ethanol exposure

Patten AR, Sickmann HM, Dyer RA, Innis SM, Christie BR. Neurosci Lett. 2013 Sep 13;551:7-11. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2013.05.051. Epub 2013 Jul 18. Erratum in: Neurosci Lett. 2016 Apr;22(2):224-5. PubMed PMID: 23872044.


2: Hippocampal neurogenesis levels predict WATERMAZE search strategies in the aging brain

Gil-Mohapel J, Brocardo PS, Choquette W, Gothard R, Simpson JM, Christie BR. PLoS One. 2013 Sep 23;8(9):e75125. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0075125. eCollection 2013. PubMed PMID: 24086453; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3781090.


3: Long-term exercise is needed to enhance synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus

Patten AR, Sickmann H, Hryciw BN, Kucharsky T, Parton R, Kernick A, Christie BR. Learn Mem. 2013 Oct 16;20(11):642-7. doi: 10.1101/lm.030635.113. PubMed PMID: 24131795.


4: Rescue of NMDAR-dependent synaptic plasticity in Fmr1 knock-out mice

Bostrom CA, Majaess NM, Morch K, White E, Eadie BD, Christie BR. Cereb Cortex. 2015 Jan;25(1):271-9. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bht237. Epub 2013 Aug 22. PubMed PMID: 23968838.


5: Liquid diets reduce cell proliferation but not neurogenesis in the adult rat hippocampus

Patten AR, Moller DJ, Graham J, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2013 Dec 19;254:173-84. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience. 2013.09.024. Epub 2013 Sep 20. PubMed PMID: 24060822.


6:Prenatal ethanol (EtOH) exposure alters the sensitivity of the adult dentate gyrus to acute EtOH exposure

Helfer JL, White ER, Christie BR. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2014 Jan;38(1):135-43. doi: 10.1111/acer.12227. Epub 2013 Aug 5. PubMed PMID: 23915337.


7: Prenatal ethanol exposure has sex-specific effects on hippocampal long-term potentiation 

Sickmann HM, Patten AR, Morch K, Sawchuk S, Zhang C, Parton R, Szlavik L, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2014 Jan;24(1):54-64. doi:
10.1002/hipo.22203. Epub 2013 Oct 4. PubMed PMID: 23996604.


8: Impairments in hippocampal synaptic plasticity following prenatal ethanol exposure are dependent on glutathione levels

Patten AR, Brocardo PS, Sakiyama C, Wortman RC, Noonan A, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2013 Dec;23(12):1463-75. doi: 10.1002/hipo.22199. Epub 2013 Oct 1. PubMed PMID: 23996467.


9: Electrophysiological identification of medial and lateral perforant path inputs to the dentate gyrus

Petersen RP, Moradpour F, Eadie BD, Shin JD, Kannangara TS, Delaney KR, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2013 Nov 12;252:154-68. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2013.07.063. Epub 2013 Aug 7. PubMed PMID: 23933307.





1: Effects of Ethanol Exposure during Distinct Periods of Brain Development on Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity

Patten AR, Gil-Mohapel J, Wortman RC, Noonan A, Brocardo PS, Christie BR. Brain Sci. 2013 Jul 19;3(3):1076-94. doi: 10.3390/brainsci3031076. PubMed PMID: 24961522; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4061886.


2: Impact of treadmill running and sex on hippocampal neurogenesis in the mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Ma X, Hamadeh MJ, Christie BR, Foster JA, Tarnopolsky MA. PLoS One. 2012;7(4):e36048. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0036048. Epub 2012 Apr 25. PubMed PMID: 22558322; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3338488.


3: Omega-3 supplementation can restore glutathione levels and prevent oxidative damage caused by prenatal ethanol exposure

Patten AR, Brocardo PS, Christie BR. J Nutr Biochem. 2013 May;24(5):760-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2012.04.003. Epub 2012 Jul 25. PubMed PMID: 22841392.


4: Differential response of hippocampal subregions to stress and learning

Hawley DF, Morch K, Christie BR, Leasure JL. PLoS One. 2012;7(12):e53126. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0053126. Epub 2012 Dec 28. PubMed PMID: 23285257; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3532167.


5: Enhanced deficits in long-term potentiation in the adult dentate gyrus with 2nd trimester ethanol consumption

Helfer JL, White ER, Christie BR. PLoS One. 2012;7(12):e51344. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0051344. Epub 2012 Dec 5. PubMed PMID: 23227262; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3515437.


6: Anxiety- and depression-like behaviors are accompanied by an increase in oxidative stress in a rat model of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: Protective effects of voluntary physical exercise

Brocardo PS, Boehme F, Patten A, Cox A, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Neuropharmacology. 2012 Mar;62(4):1607-18. doi: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2011.10.006. Epub 2011 Oct 20. PubMed PMID: 22019722.





1: Neurogenesis in Huntington’s disease: can studying adult neurogenesis lead to the development of new therapeutic strategies?

Gil-Mohapel J, Simpson JM, Ghilan M, Christie BR. Brain Res. 2011 Aug 11;1406:84-105. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2011.06.040. Epub 2011 Jun 23. Review. PubMed PMID: 21742312.


2: Glutathione restores the mechanism of synaptic plasticity in aged mice to that of the adult

Robillard JM, Gordon GR, Choi HB, Christie BR, MacVicar BA. PLoS One. 2011;6(5):e20676. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0020676. Epub 2011 May 31. PubMed PMID: 21655192; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3105108.


3: Voluntary exercise induces adult hippocampal neurogenesis and BDNF expression in a rodent model of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

Boehme F, Gil-Mohapel J, Cox A, Patten A, Giles E, Brocardo PS, Christie BR. Eur J Neurosci. 2011 May;33(10):1799-811. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2011.07676.x. Epub 2011 May 3. PubMed PMID: 21535455.


4: Voluntary exercise does not enhance long-term potentiation in the adolescent female dentate gyrus

Titterness AK, Wiebe E, Kwasnica A, Keyes G, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2011 Jun 2;183:25-31. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2011.03.050. Epub 2011 Mar 30. PubMed PMID: 21458541.


5: The role of oxidative stress in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

Brocardo PS, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Brain Res Rev. 2011 Jun 24;67(1-2):209-25. doi:10.1016/j.brainresrev.2011.02.001. Epub 2011 Apr 3. Review. PubMed PMID: 21315761.


6: Altered adult hippocampal neuronal maturation in a rat model of fetal alcohol syndrome

Gil-Mohapel J, Boehme F, Patten A, Cox A, Kainer L, Giles E, Brocardo PS, Christie BR. Brain Res. 2011 Apr 12;1384:29-41. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2011.01.116. PubMed PMID: 21303667.


7: Prenatal ethanol exposure enhances NMDAR-dependent long-term potentiation in the adolescent female dentate gyrus

Titterness AK, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2012 Jan;22(1):69-81. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20849. Epub 2010 Nov 15. PubMed PMID: 21080406.


8:  NMDA receptor hypofunction in the dentate gyrus and impaired context discrimination in adult Fmr1 knockout mice

Eadie BD, Cushman J, Kannangara TS, Fanselow MS, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2012 Feb;22(2):241-54. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20890. Epub 2010 Nov 3. PubMed PMID: 21049485.





1: Altered adult hippocampal neurogenesis in the YAC128 transgenic mouse model of Huntington disease

Simpson JM, Gil-Mohapel J, Pouladi MA, Ghilan M, Xie Y, Hayden MR, Christie BR. Neurobiol Dis. 2011 Feb;41(2):249-60. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2010.09.012. Epub 2010 Sep 25. PubMed PMID: 20875859.


2: Hippocampal cell loss and neurogenesis after fetal alcohol exposure: insights from different rodent models

Gil-Mohapel J, Boehme F, Kainer L, Christie BR. Brain Res Rev. 2010 Sep 24;64(2):283-303. doi: 10.1016/j.brainresrev.2010.04.011. Epub 2010 May 13. PubMed PMID: 20471420.


3: Characterization of the neurogenesis quiescent zone in the rodent brain: effects of age and exercise

Gil-Mohapel J, Simpson JM, Titterness AK, Christie BR. Eur J Neurosci. 2010 Mar;31(5):797-807. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2010.07132.x. Erratum in: Eur J Neurosci. 2010 May;31(9):1708. PubMed PMID: 20374281.



1: Running reduces stress and enhances cell genesis in aged mice

Kannangara TS, Lucero MJ, Gil-Mohapel J, Drapala RJ, Simpson JM, Christie BR, van Praag H. Neurobiol Aging. 2011 Dec;32(12): 2279-86. doi:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2009.12.025. Epub 2010 Jan 27. PubMed PMID: 20106549; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6016367.


2: NGF is essential for hippocampal plasticity and learning

Conner JM, Franks KM, Titterness AK, Russell K, Merrill DA, Christie BR, Sejnowski TJ, Tuszynski MH. J Neurosci. 2009 Sep 2;29(35):10883-9. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2594-09.2009. PubMed PMID: 19726646; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2765804.


3: Fmr1 knockout mice show reduced anxiety and alterations in neurogenesis that are specific to the ventral dentate gyrus

Eadie BD, Zhang WN, Boehme F, Gil-Mohapel J, Kainer L, Simpson JM, Christie BR. Neurobiol Dis. 2009 Nov;36(2):361-73. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2009.08.001. Epub 2009 Aug 8. PubMed PMID: 19666116.


4: Endogenous cannabinoid signaling is required for voluntary exercise-induced enhancement of progenitor cell proliferation in the hippocampus

Hill MN, Titterness AK, Morrish AC, Carrier EJ, Lee TT, Gil-Mohapel J, Gorzalka BB, Hillard CJ, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2010 Apr;20(4):513-23. doi:10.1002/hipo.20647. PubMed PMID: 19489006; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2847038.


5: Overexpression of the cell adhesion protein neuroligin-1 induces learning deficits and impairs synaptic plasticity by altering the ratio of excitation to inhibition in the hippocampus

Dahlhaus R, Hines RM, Eadie BD, Kannangara TS, Hines DJ, Brown CE, Christie BR, El-Husseini A. Hippocampus. 2010 Feb;20(2):305-22. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20630. PubMed PMID: 19437420.


6: Stress differentially regulates the effects of voluntary exercise on cell proliferation in the dentate gyrus of mice

Kannangara TS, Webber A, Gil-Mohapel J, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2009 Oct;19(10):889-97. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20514. PubMed PMID: 18958850.


7: Exercising some control over the hippocampus

Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2009 Oct;19(10):887-8. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20709. PubMed PMID: 19743303.


8: Cognition, learning behaviour and hippocampal synaptic plasticity are not disrupted in mice over-expressing the cholesterol transporter ABCG1

Parkinson PF, Kannangara TS, Eadie BD, Burgess BL, Wellington CL, Christie BR. Lipids Health Dis. 2009 Feb 24;8:5. doi: 10.1186/1476-511X-8-5. PubMed PMID: 19239689; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2654451.




1: Exercising our brains: how physical activity impacts synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus

Christie BR, Eadie BD, Kannangara TS, Robillard JM, Shin J, Titterness AK. Neuromolecular Med. 2008;10(2):47-58. doi: 10.1007/s12017-008-8033-2. Epub 2008 Jun 6. Review. PubMed PMID: 18535925.


2:  Long-term depression in vivo: effects of sex, stress, diet, and prenatal ethanol exposure

Titterness AK, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2008;18(5):481-91. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20407. PubMed PMID: 18240319.



3: Contribution of NR2A and NR2B NMDA subunits to bidirectional synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus in vivo

Fox CJ, Russell KI, Wang YT, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2006;16(11):907-15. PubMed PMID: 17024679.


4: Effects of exercise on NMDA receptor subunit contributions to bidirectional synaptic plasticity in the mouse dentate gyrus

Vasuta C, Caunt C, James R, Samadi S, Schibuk E, Kannangara T, Titterness AK, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2007;17(12):1201-8. PubMed PMID: 17879376.



5: Hippocampal long-term depression mediates acute stress-induced spatial memory retrieval impairment

Wong TP, Howland JG, Robillard JM, Ge Y, Yu W, Titterness AK, Brebner K, Liu L, Weinberg J, Christie BR, Phillips AG, Wang YT. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Jul 3;104(27):11471-6. Epub 2007 Jun 25. PubMed PMID: 17592137; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2040922.


6: Tyrosine phosphorylation of the GluR2 subunit is required for long-term depression of synaptic efficacy in young animals in vivo

Fox CJ, Russell K, Titterness AK, Wang YT, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2007;17(8):600-5. PubMed PMID: 17534972.


7: Antidepressant effects of exercise: evidence for an adult-neurogenesis hypothesis?

Ernst C, Olson AK, Pinel JP, Lam RW, Christie BR. J Psychiatry Neurosci. 2006 Mar;31(2):84-92. Review. PubMed PMID: 16575423; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1413959.


8: Hippocampal cell proliferation is reduced following prenatal ethanol exposure but can be rescued with voluntary exercise

Redila VA, Olson AK, Swann SE, Mohades G, Webber AJ, Weinberg J, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2006;16(3):305-11. PubMed PMID: 16425237.


9: Environmental enrichment and voluntary exercise massively increase neurogenesis in the adult hippocampus via dissociable pathways

Olson AK, Eadie BD, Ernst C, Christie BR. Hippocampus. 2006;16(3):250-60. Review. PubMed PMID: 16411242.


10: Neurogenesis in the adult hippocampus. Hippocampus

Christie BR, Cameron HA. 2006;16(3):199-207. Review. PubMed PMID: 16411231.



11: Nestin-expressing cells and their relationship to mitotically active cells in the subventricular zones of the adult rat

Ernst C, Christie BR. Eur J Neurosci. 2005 Dec;22(12):3059-66. PubMed PMID: 16367772.


12: The putative neural stem cell marker, nestin, is expressed in heterogeneous cell types in the adult rat neocorte

Ernst C, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2006;138(1):183-8. Epub 2005 Dec 15. PubMed PMID: 16343784.


13: Temporally specific proliferation events are induced in the hippocampus following acute focal injury

Ernst C, Christie BR. J Neurosci Res. 2006 Feb 15;83(3):349-61. PubMed PMID: 16342206.



14: Exercise-induced changes in dendritic structure and complexity in the adult hippocampal dentate gyrus

Redila VA, Christie BR. Neuroscience.
2006;137(4):1299-307. Epub 2005 Dec 9. PubMed PMID: 16338077.


15: Deletion of the nuclear receptor Nr2e1 impairs synaptic plasticity and dendritic structure in the mouse dentate gyrus

Christie BR, Li AM, Redila VA, Booth H, Wong BK, Eadie BD, Ernst C, Simpson EM. Neuroscience. 2006 Feb;137(3):1031-7. Epub 2005 Nov 14. PubMed PMID: 16289828.


16: Variation in antibiosis ability, against potato pathogens, of bacterial communities recovered from the endo- and exoroots of potato crops produced under conventional versus minimum tillage systems

Sturz AV, Peters RD, Carter MR, Sanderson JB, Matheson BG, Christie BR. Can J Microbiol. 2005 Aug;51(8):643-54. PubMed PMID: 16234863.


17: Isolectin-IB 4 as a vascular stain for the study of adult neurogenesis

Ernst C, Christie BR. J Neurosci Methods. 2006 Jan 15;150(1):138-42. Epub 2005 Aug 10. PubMed PMID: 16095716.


18: Corticotrophin-releasing hormone decreases synaptic transmission in rat sensorimotor cortex in vivo

Froc DJ, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2005;134(3):965-73. PubMed PMID: 16019154.


19: Voluntary exercise rescues deficits in spatial memory and long-term potentiation in prenatal ethanol-exposed male rats

Christie BR, Swann SE, Fox CJ, Froc D, Lieblich SE, Redila V, Webber A. Eur J Neurosci. 2005 Mar;21(6):1719-26. PubMed PMID: 15845099.


20: Voluntary exercise alters the cytoarchitecture of the adult dentate gyrus by increasing cellular proliferation, dendritic complexity, and spine density

Eadie BD, Redila VA, Christie BR. J Comp Neurol. 2005 May 23;486(1):39-47. PubMed PMID: 15834963.


21: Prolonged cannabinoid treatment results in spatial working memory deficits and impaired long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of the hippocampus in vivo

Hill MN, Froc DJ, Fox CJ, Gorzalka BB, Christie BR. Eur J Neurosci. 2004 Aug;20(3):859-63. PubMed PMID: 15255998.





1: Effects of voluntary exercise on synaptic plasticity and gene expression in the dentate gyrus of adult male Sprague-Dawley rats in vivo

Farmer J, Zhao X, van Praag H, Wodtke K, Gage FH, Christie BR. Neuroscience. 2004;124(1):71-9. PubMed PMID: 14960340.


2: Mice lacking methyl-CpG binding protein 1 have deficits in adult neurogenesis and hippocampal function

Zhao X, Ueba T, Christie BR, Barkho B, McConnell MJ, Nakashima K, Lein ES, Eadie BD, Willhoite AR, Muotri AR, Summers RG, Chun J, Lee KF, Gage FH. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 May 27;100(11):6777-82. Epub 2003 May 14. PubMed PMID: 12748381; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC164523.


3: Reduced synaptic plasticity in the lateral perforant path input to the dentate gyrus of aged C57BL/6 mice

Froc DJ, Eadie B, Li AM, Wodtke K, Tse M, Christie BR. J Neurophysiol. 2003 Jul;90(1):32-8. Epub 2003 Mar 12. PubMed PMID: 12634277.


4: Functional neurogenesis in the adult hippocampus

van Praag H, Schinder AF, Christie BR, Toni N, Palmer TD, Gage FH. Nature. 2002 Feb 28;415(6875):1030-4. PubMed PMID: 11875571.



5: The role of RNA editing of kainate receptors in synaptic plasticity and seizures

Vissel B, Royle GA, Christie BR, Schiffer HH, Ghetti A, Tritto T, Perez-Otano I, Radcliffe RA, Seamans J, Sejnowski T, Wehner JM, Collins AC, O’Gorman S, Heinemann SF. Neuron. 2001 Jan;29(1):217-27. PubMed PMID: 11182093.


6: Weeds as a source of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria in agricultural soils

Sturz AV, Matheson BG, Arsenault W, Kimpinski J, Christie BR. Can J Microbiol. 2001 Nov;47(11):1013-24. PubMed PMID: 11766050.


7: Active dendrites, potassium channels and synaptic plasticity

Johnston D, Christie BR, Frick A, Gray R, Hoffman DA, Schexnayder LK,
Watanabe S, Yuan LL. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2003 Apr 29;358(1432):667-74. Review. PubMed PMID: 12740112; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1693145.


8: Synaptic plasticity in morphologically identified CA1 stratum radiatum interneurons and giant projection cells

Christie BR, Franks KM, Seamans JK, Saga K, Sejnowski TJ. Hippocampus. 2000;10(6):673-83. PubMed PMID: 11153713.


9: Dopamine D1/D5 receptor modulation of excitatory synaptic inputs to layer V prefrontal cortex neurons

Seamans JK, Durstewitz D, Christie BR, Stevens CF, Sejnowski TJ. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2001 Jan 2;98(1):301-6. PubMed PMID: 11134516; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC14585.





1: van Praag H, Christie BR, Sejnowski TJ, Gage FH. Running enhances neurogenesis, learning, and long-term potentiation in mice

Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1999 Nov 9;96(23):13427-31. PubMed PMID: 10557337; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC23964.


2: Dihydropyridine-sensitive, voltage-gated Ca2+ channels contribute to the resting intracellular Ca2+ concentration of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons

Magee JC, Avery RB, Christie BR, Johnston D. J Neurophysiol. 1996 Nov;76(5):3460-70. PubMed PMID: 8930286.


3: Contribution of voltage-gated Ca2+ channels to homosynaptic long-term depression in the CA1 region in vitro

Christie BR, Schexnayder LK, Johnston D. J Neurophysiol. 1997 Mar;77(3):1651-5. PubMed PMID: 9084630.


4: The role of dendritic action potentials and Ca2+ influx in the induction of homosynaptic long-term depression in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons

Christie BR, Magee JC, Johnston D. Learn Mem. 1996 Sep-Oct;3(2-3):160-9. PubMed PMID: 10456086.


5: Dendritic calcium channels and hippocampal long-term depression.

Christie BR, Magee JC, Johnston D. Hippocampus. 1996;6(1):17-23. Review. PubMed PMID: 8878737.


6: Evidence for common expression mechanisms underlying heterosynaptic and associative long-term depression in the dentate gyrus

Christie BR, Stellwagen D, Abraham WC. J Neurophysiol. 1995 Sep;74(3):1244-7. PubMed PMID: 7500147.


7: Different Ca2+ channels in soma and dendrites of hippocampal pyramidal neurons mediate spike-induced Ca2+ influx

Christie BR, Eliot LS, Ito K, Miyakawa H, Johnston D. J Neurophysiol. 1995 Jun;73(6):2553-7. PubMed PMID: 7666160.


8:  Reduction of the threshold for long-term potentiation by prior theta-frequency synaptic activity.

Christie BR, Stellwagen D, Abraham WC. Hippocampus. 1995;5(1):52-9. PubMed PMID: 7787946.


9: Immediate early gene expression associated with the persistence of heterosynaptic long-term depression in the hippocampus

Abraham WC, Christie BR, Logan B, Lawlor P, Dragunow M. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1994 Oct 11;91(21):10049-53. PubMed PMID: 7937835; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC44955.


10: Flip side of synaptic plasticity: long-term depression mechanisms in the hippocampus

Christie BR, Kerr DS, Abraham WC. Hippocampus. 1994 Apr;4(2):127-35. Review. PubMed PMID: 7951687.


11:L-type voltage-sensitive calcium channel antagonists block heterosynaptic long-term depression in the dentate gyrus of anaesthetized rats

Christie BR, Abraham WC. Neurosci Lett. 1994 Feb 14;167(1-2):41-5. PubMed PMID: 7513841.


12: Differential regulation of paired-pulse plasticity following LTP in the dentate gyrus

Christie BR, Abraham WC. Neuroreport. 1994 Jan 12;5(4):385-8. PubMed PMID: 8003660.


13:Priming of associative long-term depression in the dentate gyrus by theta frequency synaptic activity

Christie BR, Abraham WC. Neuron. 1992 Jul;9(1):79-84. PubMed PMID: 1321647.


14: NMDA-dependent heterosynaptic long-term depression in the dentate gyrus of anaesthetized rats

Christie BR, Abraham WC. Synapse. 1992 Jan;10(1):1-6. PubMed PMID: 1531559.


15: Effects ofVerticillium albo-atrum culture filtrate on somatic embryogenesis in alfalfa

Yu K, Christie BR, Pauls KP. Plant Cell Rep. 1990 Jan;8(9):509-11. doi: 10.1007/BF00820197. PubMed PMID: 24226274.


16:Cingulate cell discharge patterns related to hippocampal EEG and their modulation by muscarinic and nicotinic agents

Colom LV, Christie BR, Bland BH. Brain Res. 1988 Sep 20;460(2):329-38. PubMed PMID: 3224265.


Contact Us


Tel: 250-472-4244

Address: Medical Sciences Building, University of Victoria, 3800 Finnerty Rd, Victoria BC, V8W 2Y2, Canada


Students at any level are welcome to volunteer in the lab (hours vary based on project needs) to begin developing research skills. This is a great way to learn about the lab before engaging in further studies described in the options below.

Directed Study

 Undergraduate and Graduate students can receive course credit for research projects that they complete in the laboratory. This must be arranged in advance through a course add/drop form that is filled out in consultation with Dr. Christie that describes your project, deadlines, expectations and grading. Typically a directed study will involve a final written report and oral presentation(s) to the lab.


Senior undergraduate students can engage in a two-semester-long intensive research project in the lab through their honours degree program. These projects take place over two semesters, involve oral presentations to the lab and a final written thesis. We encourage our students to present their work on campus to the public and their peers at Honours Fest.

Paid Work Opportunities

There are many options for students to work in paid positions in the lab through funding opportunities at UVic which include JCURA, SURA and NSERC USRAs. Students are encouraged to find out more about these opportunities through UVic and to get in touch with the lab early to express their interest.


JCURA: Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Award

UVic Biology: Undergraduate Research & Funding

UVic Biology: Undergraduate Programs for Honours Information

UVic Biology: Concentration in Neurobiology

UVic Combined Biology & Psychology Program

UVic Psychology: Honours Program

UVic Exercise Science, Physical & Health Education Programs