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Kelli A. Duncan

Assistant Professor of Biology on the Class of 1951 Chair & Director of Neuroscience & Behavior

BSA, Biological Science, The University of Georgia
MS, Biology, Georgia State University
PhD, Biology (Neuroscience and Behavior), Georgia State University
Post-doctoral Fellow, Biological Sciences, Lehigh University

Research Interest

Traumatic Brain Injury and Steroid Hormones

I consider myself to be a behavioral neuroendocrinologist, that’s the short way of saying that I am interested in how the brain interacts with hormones to alter itself and behavior. My lab examines the role of the endocrine system following traumatic brain injury (TBI). There are a number of biological cascades that occur following TBI. One such cascade involves the regulation of steroid hormones and their receptors. Many of these hormones are neuroprotective and serve to protect the brain and mediate future damage.

Traumatic Brain Injury and the Developing Brain.

Previous research has shown that contrary to popular opinion, injury to the juvenile brain has longer lasting and more detrimental effects than injury to the adult brain. I plan to examine the role of steroid hormones on neuroprotection and neuronal survival in the developing and adult brain; and to determine whether the juvenile brain’s response to injury is similar to the adult response. My work primarily focuses on using the Australian Zebra finch, a passerine songbird, as my model system.