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Marcelo Rigon Zimmer, PhD, BS

Postdoctoral Associate

Contact Information

Marcelo Rigon Zimmer, PhD, BS

Mailing Address

  • 38 Crown St

    Apt 115

    New Haven, CT 06510

    United States

Research Summary

I am interested in understanding the neurobiological underpinning of infant-to-mother attachment using animal models.

Extensive Research Description

In my Ph.D. studies, I questioned the role of hypothalamic hunger-promoting Agrp neurons beyond its canonic role. In these studies, we found that Agrp neurons play a role in stereotypical behavior using transgenic mouse models. These findings provide new insights into metabolic disorders and psychiatric diseases that exhibit dysregulation of energy balance and stereotypical behaviors. We also identified a new role of Agrp neurons in contributing to the infant's bonding to the mother in neonatal mice. These findings revealed a hidden neuronal mechanism of the ontogeny of social relationships in mammals. Currently, I am interested in understanding how the infant develops a unique bond with the mother. I am studying infant behavior in different rodent species (mouse, rat, and guinea pig). I am conducting behavioral studies and using state-of-the-art neuroscience techniques to identify the underlying mechanisms mediating the infant's bonding to the mother.

Coauthors

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Selected Publications