Lauren French

Headshot of Lauren French
Office Phone: (814) 332-3306
Office Building: Steffee Hall
Office Room: B319
Box #: 10

Professional Title/s

Associate Professor of Biology and Neuroscience

Faculty Credentials

B.A., Oberlin College; Ph.D., Cornell University

Biographical Information

Research Interests

My research interests fall under the general headings of Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience and Pain Physiology. I am interested in exploring how cells communicate with each other using both electricity and chemicals . The projects in my lab involve electrophysiology and molecular biology techniques.

Pharmacology is critical to the study of the nervous system; to learn how proteins such as ion channels contribute to normal function, and to discover the mechanism underlying pathological conditions. I am interested in how various chemicals affect neuronal signaling by targeting ion channels. One project involves a derivative of an anesthetic drug (etomidate) and whether it targets voltage-gated ion channels outside of its intended GABA receptor target.

Another line of research involves the crayfish as a model organism to study adult neurogenesis. It is now well known that neurogenesis is ongoing throughout animals’ lifetime in certain areas of the brain. I am interested in studying the mechanisms underlying this process, and how it can be promoted or inhibited.
Finally, I have been using the Cold Pressor Task to study pain perception in humans. I am interested in what characteristics or factors contribute to increased or decreased pain tolerance in humans. For example, one line of research involves looking at the relationship between sex/gender and pain sensation.

More Information

Office Hours

Academic year 2023-2024 (I am on sabbatical, but I do have some limited office hours)

  • Friday: 1:30-3:30 pm

Please sign up via Google calendar or email me to request a different time.