UK Department of Anatomy
Greg A. Gerhardt,
University of Kansas (1983)
Postdoctoral Training, Univ. of Colorado Health Sciences Center
Professor, Anatomy & Neurobiology, Neurology, Psychiatry and Electrical Engineering
Director, Morris K. Udall Parkinson's Disease Research Center of Excellence
Director, Center for Microelectrode Technology
Co-Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Neuroscience Methods
Research Interests: Dynamic Neuropharmacology in Parkinsons Disease and Aging
Dr. Gerhardts laboratory focuses on studies of the dopamine and glutamate neurotransmitter systems in animal models of Parkinsons disease. For these studies, his lab uses both the 6-hydroxydopamine-treated rat model and the MPTP-treated primate model of Parkinsons disease. Using his microsensor techniques, Dr. Gerhardts lab has investigated the release and uptake of dopamine in the striatum and substantia nigra of the normal and parkinsonian brain. A major finding from these studies is that there is a severe disruption of dopamine regulation in the parkinsonian brain. This disruption of the control of dopamine may relate to some of the movement problems seen in this CNS disease. His laboratory is currently investigating the use of growth factors, such as GDNF, to restore function to damaged dopamine neurons. His laboratory has recently shown that GDNF can restore function to damaged dopamine neurons in rats and monkeys. This forms the basis for the Morris K. Udall Parkinsons Disease Center of Excellence.
Another area of research in his laboratory involves studies of movement abnormalities in aging. Such studies are performed in the striatum and substantia nigra of young andaged Fischer 344 rats, and in young and aged nonhuman primates. His recent studies have shown that dopamine synapses change in their ability to regulate neurotransmitter release through changes in the dopamine transporter. This lack of regulation or change in the regulation of neurotransmitter signaling may account for some of the motor abnormalities that are seen in aged animals and humans.
major research area of Dr. Gerhardts laboratory is the dynamics of neurotransmitter
function in the central nervous system. In order to perform such studies, his
lab develops microsensors (5-30 microns) and instrumentation for the rapid, sensitive, and spatially resolved
measurement of neurotransmitters and neuromodulators,
such as dopamine, norepinephrine, serotonin, nitric oxide, and glutamate. A
major goal of these studies is to understand neurotransmitter signaling in biological
systems. This forms the basis for the Center for Sensor Technology.
Stanford JA and Gerhardt GA. Aged F344 rats exhibit altered electrophysiological activity in locomotor-unrelated but not locomotor-related striatal neurons. Neurobio Aging 25:509-515, 2004.
K.A., Leiser S.,
Salvatore MF, Zhang
J-L, Large DM,
Zuch CL, David D,
Ujhelyi L, Hudson JL,
Parikh V, Sarter M,
Bruno JP, Pomerleau F, Huettl P, and
Maswood N, Young J, Tilmont E, Zhang Z, Gash DM, Gerhardt GA, Grondin R, Yi A, Roth GS, Lane MA, Carson R, Cohen RM, Mouton PM, Mattson MP, Ingram DK. Caloric restriction increases GDNF levels and attenuates neurochemical and behavioral deficits in a primate model of Parkinson’s disease. PNAS, 101(52):18171-18176, 2004.
Nickell J, Pomerleau F, Allen J and Gerhardt GA. Aged related changes in the dynamics of potassium-evoked l-glutamate release in the striatum of Fischer 344 rats. J Neural Transm. 112(1):87-96, 2004.
Zaman V, Nelson ME, Gerhardt GA and Rohrer B. Neurodegenerative alterations in the nigrostriatal system of trkB hypomorphic mice. Exp. Neurol. 190(2):337-46, 2004.
Burmeister JJ, Palmer M and Gerhardt GA. L-lactate measures in brain tissue with ceramic-based multisite microelectrodes. Biosensors and Bioelectronics 20:1772-1779, 2005.
Daws LC, Montanez S,
Glaser PEA, Currier TD, Joyce BM, Castellanos FX and Gerhardt GA. In vivo electrochemical studies of d-amphetamine and d,l-amphetamine-induced dopamine release in the rat striatum and nucleus accumbens core. Psychopharmacology (in press), 2005.
Slevin JT, Gerhardt GA, Smith CD, Gash DM, Kryscio R, and Young AB. Unilateral Intraputamenal GDNF improves bilateral motor functions in patients with Parkinson’s disease. J Neurosurg 102:216-222, 2005.
Gash DM, Zhang Z, Ai Y, Grondin R and Gerhardt GA. Intranigral GDNF infusion: VTA and nigral restoration in parkinsonian monkeys. Annals of Neurology (in press), May 17, 2005.
Ferreira NR, Ledo A, Frade JG, Gerhardt GA, Laranjinha J, and Barbosa RM. Electrochemical measurement of endogenously-produced nitric oxide in brain slices using nafion/o-phenylenediamine modified carbon fiber microelectrodes. Analytica Chimica Acta (in press), 2005.
Salvatore MF, Fisher B, Surgener SP, Gerhardt GA, and Roualut T. Neurochemical investigations of dopamine neunal systems in iron-regulatory protein 2 (IRP-2) knockout mice. Mol. Brain Res. (in press), 2005.
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