The focus of research in the Salahpour lab is to understand dopamine transmission such that it can be modulated by pharmacology for the treatment of neurological and psychiatric conditions. Some of the specific proteins that we work with are the dopamine transporter (DAT), vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT2), tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and trace amine associated receptor 1 (TAAR1).
We are currently pursuing three primary areas of research focused on dopamine signalling, transmission and homeostasis in vivo.
- Understanding the mechanistic role of dopamine and exogenous chemicals in neurodegenerative processes such as Parkinson’s disease.
- In vivo characterisation of dopamine signalling pathways.
- Development of new therapies for Dopamine Transporter Deficiency Syndrome that increase dopamine transporter expression.
We use both in vitro and in vivo approaches with transgenic mouse models for our studies. Our multidisciplinary experimental approach involves molecular pharmacology, molecular biology, biochemistry and behavioural pharmacology.