Last fall, I attended the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in San Diego, CA. My assistant (Michelle Palumbo) and I presented the results of my research using postmortem human brain tissue to determine whether individuals with autism had changes in the oxytocin receptor compared to typically developing specimens. Oxytocin is a hormone that acts in the brain to modulate social function, and it’s been highly implicated in the biology of autism, although no one has determined whether there are changes in this system in the autistic brain.
I was approached by Rob Percy, the media relations guy for the Allen Brain Institute in Seattle, and he wanted to feature me and my research for a video, because I rely on the Allen Institute’s Human Brain Reference Atlas (it’s an incredible resource; just launched in September). So we did an interview, and a few months later, he put this amazing webisode together! Very proud of it and happy to share! Thanks to my incredible boss Dr. Karen Bales for her support, too, of course.