Web Site: people.uwm.edu/fjh
Lab Page: Helmstetter Lab
Ph.D., Dartmouth College, 1989
The primary focus of our work is on understanding the neural systems underlying complex psychological phenomena like learning, memory, and emotion. We are interested in how memory is stored in the brain, how experience and learning can modify the nervous system, and how brain systems work together to solve these problems. While the emphasis in my lab is on basic science rather than on neuropathology or mental disorders, some of the fundamental questions we’re addressing can relate to clinical problems. We take a multi-level approach which includes molecular neurobiology, functional brain imaging, and behavioral studies in humans and laboratory animals.
Research projects currently underway include:
- Studies on the molecular mechanisms involved in long-term memory formation with a focus on neuronal protein synthesis and degradation.
- Examining some of the neurobiological mechanisms through which motivation and emotion can influence learning and perception.
- Circuit analysis of fear learning focused on interactions between the amygdala, hippocampus and prefrontal cortex.
- Functional mapping of brain circuits important for implicit and explicit memory performance using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in human volunteers. The role of awareness and consciousness in learning.
I am currently interested in taking new Ph.D. students and postdocs. Federally funded RA positions are available to qualified students. Please feel free to contact me or visit our web site for further details.
Psych 254: Physiological Psychology
Psych 355: Introduction to Neuroscience II: From Brain to Behavior
Psych 657: Neurobiology of Learning and Memory
Psych 754: Proseminar in Biological Psychology
Psych 954: Gene Expression and Behavior
Pedersen, W. S., Balderston, N. L., Miskovich, T. A., Belleau, E. L., Helmstetter, F. J., & Larson, C. L. Disentangling the effects of stimulus novelty and affective valence in the amygdala, hippocampus, and bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience.
Jarome, T. J., Ferrara, N. C., Kwapis, J. L., & (2016, January (1st Quarter/Winter)). CaMKII regulates proteasome phosphorylation and activity and promotes memory destabilization following retrieval.
Helmstetter, F. J. (Ed.). Neurobiology of Learning & Memory
Kwapis, J. L., Jarome, T. J., Lee, J. L., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2015, June). The retrosplenial cortex is involved in the formation of memory for context and trace fear conditioning. Neurobiology of Learning & Memory
Kwapis, J. L., Jarome, T. J., Lee, J. L., Gilmartin, M. R., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2014, September). Extinguishing trace fear engages the retrosplenial cortex rather than the amygdala. Neurobiology of Learning & Memory
Jarome, T. J., Kwapis, J. L., Hallengren, J. J., Wilson, S. M., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2014, February). The ubiquitin-specific protease 14 (USP14) is a critical regulator of long-term memory formation. Learning & Memory
Jarome, T. J., Kwapis, J. L., Ruenzel, W. L., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2013, August). CaMKII, but not protein kinase A, regulates Rpt6 phosphorylation and proteasome activity during the formation of long-term memories. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Gilmartin, M. R., Miyawaki, H., Helmstetter, F. J., & Diba, K. (2013, June). Prefrontal activity links nonoverlapping events in memory. Journal of Neuroscience
Jarome, T. J., Kwapis, J. L., Parsons, R. G., Gafford, G. M., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2012). The timing of multiple retrieval events can alter GluR1 phosphorylation and the requirement for protein synthesis in fear memory reconsolidation. Learning & Memory, Cold Spring Harbor
Jarome, T. J., Werner, C. T., Kwapis, J. L., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2011, September). Activity Dependent Protein Degradation Is Critical for the Formation and Stability of Fear Memory in the Amygdala. PlosOne, www.plosone.org