Dr. Camron Bryant is an Assistant Professor of Pharmacology and Psychiatry as well as Director of the Laboratory of Addiction Genetics at Boston University. In recent years, Camron has rekindled his interest in snowboarding and skateboarding. He also started cycling more seriously as a postdoctoral fellow, and cycling to work has become part of his regular routine, even in the winter. Another passion for Camron is going out to eat and enjoying the many awesome restaurants in his neighborhood. Camron’s lab is investigating the genetic basis of addiction using behavioral neuroscience and genetic approaches. They try to locate regions of the genome in model organisms that are associated with changes in behavior that they think are important for addiction. Next, they narrow the regions of interest down further and further until they can identify a single gene that influences a particular behavior. Once they discover the relevant gene, they can start to understand the function of that gene using different genetic tools such as genome editing. The disorders Camron is studying range from binge eating to addiction to opioids and psychostimulants like methamphetamine. Camron received his undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and he was awarded his PhD in neuroscience from the University of California, Los Angeles. He conducted postdoctoral research in genetics and worked as a Research Associate at the University of Chicago before joining the faculty at Boston University in 2012. Camron is the recipient of the Achievement Award for College Scientists, the International Behavioral and Neural Genetics Society Outstanding Young Investigator Award for Postdocs, and the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology Travel Award. Camron joined us for an interview to discuss his experiences in life and science.
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