Fernando J. Bustos, Ph.D.

Title
Postdoctoral Fellow
Department
Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Institution
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Address
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Building 46
City, State, Zip
Cambridge, MA 02139
Country
United States
Phone
617-258-6415
E-mail
fjbustos[at]mit.edu
Website
http://web.mit.edu/mcplab/
Research Field
Neuroscience
Award Year
2015
Country Of Origin
Chile
Mentor Name
Martha Constantine-Paton, Ph.D.

Research

The Constantine-Paton Lab investigates the molecular missteps that can lead to disorders such as anxiety and/or autistic behaviors. Anxiety and autistic behaviors are characterized by asocial and repetitive conducts. To identify genes and brain regions linked to such actions, my project will use a mouse model that displays similar behaviors, referred to as anxiety/autistic mice. I will take advantage of a new technology named CRISPR, which is capable of editing the genomic sequence, specifically, allowing the deletion and/or insertion of DNA sequences as desired. I will use CRISPR to remove the defective gene in the anxiety/autistic mice and assess whether this genetic surgery eliminates the aberrant behaviors. This work will allow us to investigate the neural circuits and possibly other genes responsible for these debilitating behaviors and could pave the way to new therapies.