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Student Research Projects

The following lists of journal publications, research conference presentations, and student research projects are representative of the scope of opportunities available for students to conduct high quality neuroscience research.

Journal Research Publications:

Pittman, D. W., Smith, K. R., Crawley, M. E., & Corbin, C. H. (2008). Fatty acid taste in obesity-prone and -resistant rats: Strain and sex differences. Chemical Senses, 33(5):449-60. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Pittman) 

Reid, A. K., Dixon, R. A., & Gray, S. (2008). Variation and selection in response structures. In N. Innis (Ed.). Reflections on Adaptive Behavior: Essays in Honor of J. E. R. Staddon (pp. 51-85). MIT Press: Cambridge, MA. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Reid)

Pittman, D. W., Crawley, M. E., Corbin, C. H. & Smith, K. R. (2007). Chorda tympani nerve transection impairs the gustatory detection of free fatty acids in male and female rats. Brain Research, 1151, 74-83. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Pittman)

Bachá-Méndez, G., Reid, A. K., & Mendoza-Soylovna, A. (2007). Resurgence of integrated behavioral units. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 87, 5-24. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Reid) 

Bachá-Méndez, G., & Reid, A. K. (2006). Acquisition of simple response patterns. Mexican Journal of Behavior Analysis, 32, 155-177. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Reid) 

Pittman, D. W., Labban, C. E., Anderson, A. A., & O'Connor, H. E. (2006). Linoleic and oleic acids alter the licking responses to sweet, salt, sour, and bitter tastants in rats. Chemical Senses, 31, 835-843. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Pittman) 

McCormack, D. N., Clyburn, V. L., & Pittman, D. W. (2006). Detection of free fatty acids following a conditioned taste aversion in rats. Physiology & Behavior, 87, 582-594. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Pittman) 

Reid, R. A., & Reid, A. K. (2005). Route finding by rats in an open arena. Behavioural Processes, 68, 51-67. (Faculty advisor: Dr. Reid) 

Presentations at Research Conferences:

Student 

Conference 

Title 

Faculty Advisor 

Harry Quedenfeld & Chelsea Nill Association for Chemoreception Sciences, 2010 Preference of the Fatty Acids Linoleate and Oleate during Long-Term 2-Bottle Tests. Dr. Pittman
Kimberly Smith Association for Chemoreception Sciences, 2009  Sweet Stimuli Elicit Differential Responses in the Chorda Tympani Nerve of Obesity-resistant Rats Compared to Obesity-prone Rats. Dr. Pittman
Molly McGinnis, Lindsey Richardson, & Elizabeth Miller Association for Chemoreception Sciences, 2009  GABA-A Receptor Activation Influences Consumption of Appetitive and Aversive Tastants. Dr. Pittman

Hannah Dinnen & Ivy Farr

International Symposium on Olfaction and Taste, 2008

Behavioral evidence of benzodiazepine-induced alterations of the gustatory evaluation of accepted and aversive taste stimuli.

Dr. Pittman

Robynn Mackechnie & Kishan Govind 

Association of Southeastern Biologists, 2008 

Does scheduled access to a highly palatable carbohydrate-rich food trigger binge eating in laboratory rats? 

Dr. Davis 

Kishan Govind & Robynn Mackechnie 

Association of Southeastern Biologists, 2008 

Limited intermittent access to a highly palatable food combined with chronic mild stress induces overeating in laboratory rats. 

Dr. Davis 

Kimberly Smith, Meaghan Crawley, Cameron Corbin 

Association for Chemoreception Sciences, 2007 

Fatty acid taste in obesity-prone and
-resistant rats: Strain and sex differences. 
 

Dr. Pittman 

Laura Smith and Laura Murray 

Society for Neuroscience, 2007 

UBP 296 suppresses feeding elicited by lateral hypothalamic injection of ATPA  

Dr. Hettes 

Kimberly Smith 

South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities, 2007 

Conditioned Taste Aversion Threshold of Free Fatty Acids in Obese-Prone and Obese-Resistant Rats 

Dr. Pittman 

Kimberly Collins 

Association for Behavior Analysis International, 2006 

The roles of discriminative stimuli within resonse sequences 

Dr. Reid 

Ashley Adamson, Mallory Bramlett, Sarah Evans, Lauren Gasque, Ryn Lister 

Association for Chemoreception Sciences, 2006 

Brief stimulus presentations permit gustatory detection of linoleic acid but not oleic acid in rats 

Dr. Pittman 

Amelia Keaton 

NASA Ames Research Center, 2005 

Does a change in food texture affect appetite? A sensory specific satiety study in college aged males. 

Drs. Hettes & Davis 

Jennie McCallister 

NASA Ames Research Center, 2005 

Overeating induced by the glutamate receptor antagonist CNQX within the nucleus accumbens of satiated rats. 

Drs. Hettes & Davis 

Katie Kavanagh 

NASA Ames Research Center, 2005 

Effects of lateral hypothalamic injections of glutamate receptor agonist (ATPA) and antagonist (D-AP5) on food intake in rats under simulated microgravity 

Drs. Hettes & Davis 

Tyler Stinnett 

NASA Ames Research Center, 2005 

Manipulating the sensory properties of food enhances food intake in rats under simulated microgravity: a demonstration of sensory specific satiety with the hindlimb unloading model 

Drs. Hettes & Davis 

Leah Harris, Lauren Murchison, Sara Shields, Jennifer Wallace 

Association for Chemoreception Sciences, 2005 

The role of the chorda tympani nerve in the detection of free fatty acids in rats. 

Dr. Pittman 

Kara Vogelpohl, Rebecca Catoe, Klaire Kiehne, Jeff Labban 

Society for the Quantitative Analysis of Behavior, 2005 

Resistance to change within response sequences cued by successively and simultaneously presented discriminative stimuli. 

Dr. Reid 

Joshua Henry, Cassie Skinner, Paul Wojoski, and Amy Yanke 

South Carolina Academy of Sciences, 2005 

Suppression of overeating by the endogenous opiate antagnoist naloxone. 

Drs. Davis & Hettes 

Tyler Stinnett and Amelia  Keaton 

Society for Neuroscience, 2005 

Sensory specific satiety in rats under simulated microgravity. 

Dr. Davis 

Jennie McCallister, Katie Kavanagh, Tyler Stinnett, and Amelia Keaton 

Society for Neuroscience (Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience session), 2005 

Lateral hypothalamic injections of the Glutamate Receptor Antagonist, D-AP5, decrease Food Intake in Rats under Simulated Microgravity 

Drs. Davis & Hettes 

Past Student Neuroscience Projects:

GABAergic Influences Increase Ingestion across All Taste Categories. [Fall 2008]Students: Mazi Alimohamed, Brittney Getz, Molly McGinnis, Elizabeth Miller, Lindsey Richardson, & Amanda Ruscin
Research Mentor: Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

The Potential Effectiveness of UBP 302 as a Kainite Receptor Antagonist in Suppressing ATPA- Elicited Feeding in the Lateral Hypothalamus. [Fall 2008]Students: Jamie Nichols, Ashley Carr, & Cameron Simmons
Research Mentor: Dr. Stacey Hettes, Associate Professor of Biology

Sequential Dependencies Produced When Learning Response Sequences. [Fall 2008]Students: Jenny Amsden, Kelley Crawford, Tom Glazebrook, & Chelsea Nill
Research Mentor: Dr. Reid, Professor of Psychology

Sound Production in a Parasitoid Wasp. [Fall 2008]Student: Samantha Hall
Research Mentor: Dr. John Moeller, Associate Professor of Biology

Influence of a high-fat diet on the detection threshold for avoiding linoleic acid following a conditioned taste aversion in obesity-prone and obesity-resistant rat strains. [Spring 2008]Students: Tia Anders, Covington Avent, Christina Jackson, Phillip Neill, Chelsea Nill, Cameron Simmons, & David Trant
Research Mentor: Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

Characterization of the afferent gustatory responsiveness of the chorda tympani nerve to tastants with and without linoleic acid in obesity-prone and obesity-resistant rat strains. [Spring 2008]Student: Kimberly Smith
Research Mentor: Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

The role of discriminative stimuli and motivation level in a three response sequence. [Spring 2008]Students: Kara Bennewitz, Tye Tindal, & Wendelyn West
Research Mentor: Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

Chowing down: Do rats eat less when they eat slower? [Spring 2008]Students: Elise Boos, Prashant Patel, and Margaret Strom
Research Mentor: Dr. G.R. Davis, Professor of Biology

Effects of benzodiazepines on short- and long-term feeding patterns: A role for GABAergic processing of taste information. [Fall 2007]Students: Hannah Dinnen and Ivy Farr
Research Mentor: Dr. David Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

The role of glutamate receptor activation within the hypothalamus in the stimulation of feeding behavior. [Fall 2007] Students: Kalee Clausen, Mary Wheeler, Daniel West, and Josh Smith
Research Mentor: Dr. Stacey Hettes, Associate Professor of Biology

Deciphering the magic number 7: The effect of focus switching on working memory capacity. [Fall 2007]Students: Crystal Burnette and Leigh Anne Campbell
Research Mentor: Dr. Kara Bopp, Assistant Professor of Psychology

Anti-Anxiety Drugs Increase Sweet Taste in Obese-prone & Obese-resistant Female Rats. [Spring 2007]Students:    Timothy Bradford, McCown Bridges, Kelley Crawford, Laura Depko, Lynne Sparrow, and Amanda Ruscin
Research Mentor:   Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

The Effects of Extrinsic Reward on Intrinsic Motivation. [Spring 2007]Student:    Leandra Parris
Research Mentor:   Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

A Successive Approximations Approach to Producing Complex Phonemes. [Spring 2007]Students:    Rachel Hyatt, Mary Catherine McClain, Megan Propst, and Kelsey Roth
Research Mentor:   Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

Does daily limited access to a highly palatable food induce binge eating in rats? [Spring 2007]Presented by:    Pres Garrett, Katie Isbell, and Robynn Mackechnie on behalf of BIO250
Research Mentor:   Dr. G.R. Davis, Professor of Biology

Working memory and Aging: Examination of item similarity effect. [Fall 2006]Students:            Ashley Clary and Ashley Zais
Research Mentor:    Dr. Kara Bopp, Assistant Professor of Psychology

A Behavioral Analysis of Lateral Hypothalamic Regulated Feeding: A Syringe Full of Medicine Helps the Milk Mash Go Down. [Fall 2006]Students:            Phillip Hutchinson, Laura Smith, and Michael Greene
Research Mentor:    Dr. Stacey Hettes, Assistant Professor of Biology

Differences in Taste Sensitivity to Linoleic Acid between Male & Female Rats. [Fall 2006]Students:            Cameron Corbin, Rebecca Dover, Brittany Lewis, and Kimberly Smith
Research Mentor:    Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

Effects of Palatability on Food, Caloric, and Macronutrient Intake in a Three-Course Meal. [Spring 2006]Students:            Tim Beckner, Michelle Bertling, Jai-Sheena Garnett, Allison Thomas, and Kim Trimble
Research Mentor:    Dr. G.R. Davis, Professor of Biology

The Effects of Supplemental Stimuli within Response Sequences. [Spring 2006]Student:            Kim Collins
Research Mentor:    Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

Stimulus Value in Higher Order Sign Tracking. [Spring 2006]Students:            Lauren Bayne, Mo Roberts, Becky Sasso
Research Mentor:    Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

Overeating Induced by Injection of the Glutamate Receptor Antagonist, CNQX, within the Nucleus Accumbens of Satiated Rats. [Spring 2006]Students:            Amelia Keaton and Tyler Stinnett
Research Mentor:    Dr. Stacey Hettes, Assistant Professor of Biology & Dr. G.R. Davis, Professor of Biology

A Role for Taste in the Detection of Free Fatty Acids. [Fall 2005]Students:            Ashley Adamson, Mallory Bramlett, Sarah Evans, Lauren Gasque,  and Ryn Lister
Research Mentor:    Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

Does Nucleus Accumbens Activation Regulate Overeating? A Sensory Specific Satiety Study. [Fall 2005]Students:            Mallori McAllister, Nicole Graver, and Elizabeth Norman
Research Mentor:    Dr. Stacey Hettes, Assistant Professor of Biology

The Role of Discriminative Stimuli in Response Sequences. [Spring 2005]Students:            Erin Higgenbotham, Caroline Labban, Meghan Lijewski, Kim Collins
Research Mentor:    Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

Duration of Stimulus Presentation affects Oleic Acid Detection in Rats. [Spring 2005]Students:            Lauren Murchison (Leah Harris, Hayley O’Connor, Sara Shields, Jennifer Wallace)
Research Mentor:    Dr. Dave Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

Stimulus Value in Higher Order Autoshaping. [Fall 2004]Students:            Rachel Ashton, Lizzie Davis, Lindsay Barnard
Research Mentor:    Dr. Alliston Reid, Professor of Psychology

The Effects of Simulated Microgravity on Sensory Specific Satiety in Rats Using the Hindlimb Unloading Model. [Fall 2004]Students:            Elizabeth Gowan, Casey Skinner, and Tyler Stinnett
Research Mentor:    Dr. G.R. Davis, Professor of Biology

Role of the Chorda Tympani Nerve in the Gustatory Detection of Free Fatty Acids. [Fall 2004]Students:            Leah Harris, Lauren Murchison, Sara Shields, and Jennifer Wallace
Research Mentor:    Dr. David Pittman, Associate Professor of Psychology

Mini-size Me! Suppressing a Rat's Urge to Overeat via Injection of Glutamate Receptor Antagonists into the Lateral Hypothalamus. [Fall 2004]Students:            Jaya Abraham, Katie Laser, and Kelly Moxley
Research Mentor:    Dr. Stacey Hettes, Assistant Professor of Biology