Andrea J. Elberger, Ph.D.

Andrea J. Elberger, Ph.D.

Professor

Director
Confocal Laser Scanning Microscope Facility
Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology


The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
855 Monroe Avenue, Suite 515
Memphis, TN 38163
Tel: (901) 448-4101
Fax: (901) 448-7193
Lab: 309 Wittenborg Anatomy Building
Email: Andrea J. Elberger



Education

  • Ph.D. Institution: State University of New York at Stony Brook, Department of Psychology
  • Postdoctoral: University of Pennsylvania, Department of Anatomy

Research Interests

Studies of the interaction of the corpus callosum and visual system during development have shown that the corpus callosum has a role in the development of many different visual functions. Simple functions such as eye alignment, depth perception, visuomotor coordination and visual field organization, as well as more complex visual functions such as spatial resolution and binocular interactions, are altered by neonatal corpus callosum section. However, there is a specific time interval during which the interaction between the corpus callosum and the developing visual system seems to take place. This interval, or critical period, is limited to the first postnatal month. Morphological studies have illustrated that callosal connections during development are plastic with respect to alterations in visual input. Not all callosal connections are required for normal visual development to occur.

Several different projects are currently under investigation in the laboratory. One major project deals with determination of the distribution and extent of corpus callosum cell bodies and dendrites at different stages of development in different mammalian species. Another major project involves the determination of the neurotransmitters used by callosal cells and by cells presynaptic and postsynaptic to callosal cells. A parallel project investigates of the development of thalamocortical/corticothalamic pathways and their relationship to the developing corpus callosum. These analyses are related to the mechanism by which the corpus callosum has a critical role in the development and/or maintenance of a normal visual system. The morphological studies are being performed at both light (epifluorescence, brightfield, confocal laser scanning) and electron microscopic levels and the results will be integrated via computer reconstruction of callosal and visual cortical microcircuitry.

Representative Publications

  • Heldt SA, Elberger AJ, Deng Y, Guley NH, Del Mar N, Rogers J, Choi GW, Ferrell J, Rex TS, Honig MG, Reiner A. A novel closed-head model of mild traumatic brain injury caused by primary overpressure blast to the cranium produces sustained emotional deficits in mice. Front Neurol. 2014 Jan 22;5:2. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2014.00002. eCollection 2014. PubMed PMID: 24478749; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3898331.
  • Gurley SN, Abidi AH, Allison P, Guan P, Duntsch C, Robertson JH, Kosanke SD, Keir ST, Bigner DD, Elberger AJ, Moore BM 2nd. Mechanism of anti-glioma activity and in vivo efficacy of the cannabinoid ligand KM-233. J Neurooncol. 2012 Nov;110(2):163-77. doi: 10.1007/s11060-012-0958-5. Epub 2012 Aug 9. PubMed PMID: 22875710.
  • Du X, Elberger AJ, Matthews DB, Hamre KM. Heterozygous deletion of NR1 subunit of the NMDA receptor alters ethanol-related behaviors and regional expression of NR2 subunits in the brain. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2012 Jan-Feb;34(1):177-86. doi: 10.1016/j.ntt.2011.09.001. Epub 2011 Sep 14. PubMed PMID: 21945132.
  • Livy DJ, Elberger AJ. Alcohol exposure during the first two trimesters-equivalent alters the development of corpus callosum projection neurons in the rat. Alcohol. 2008 Jun;42(4):285-93. doi: 10.1016/j.alcohol.2008.04.002. Epub 2008 May 12. PubMed PMID: 18468834; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2683683.
  • Matta SG, Elberger AJ. Combined exposure to nicotine and ethanol throughout full gestation results in enhanced acquisition of nicotine self-administration in young adult rat offspring. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2007 Aug;193(2):199-213. Epub 2007 Apr 3. PubMed PMID: 17404712.
  • Margret CP, Li CX, Chappell TD, Elberger AJ, Matta SG, Waters RS. Prenatal alcohol exposure delays the development of the cortical barrel field in neonatal rats. Exp Brain Res. 2006 Jun;172(1):1-13. Epub 2006 Feb 28. PubMed PMID: 16506013.

View more references (pubmed link)