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Lucas Kinsey

Lucas Kinsey, M.S.

Research Associate


Lucas has always been passionate about the development and application of optogenetic constructs, especially their application in investigating the neural circuits that underlie dynamics behaviors such as foraging and decision-making. Currently Lucas works on projects involving AIND's animal behavior team and AIND's Ophys team. Lucas completed his Bachelors of Science in Neuroscience, minoring in chemistry, and a Masters in Biology at George Mason University, located in Virginia, working on localizing GEVIs to the neuronal soma of neurons as an undergrad and fusing trafficking proteins to optogenetic actuators for his Master's thesis under the mentorship of Dr. Theodore Dumas. Lucas gained his passion for understanding how optogenetics can be used to interrogate dynamic behaviors at Janelia Research campus working as an RA in Dr. Karel Svoboda's lab assisting Dr. Arseny Finkelstein.

Research Focus:

Lucas is focused on the interrogation of neural circuits that underlie dynamic behaviors such as foraging and decision-making. As a research associate, this involves cloning sensors used to measure the neuromodulators of mice during their behavior, actively measuring neuromodulators using integrated fiber-photometry techniques, developing a training regime for mice to learn dynamic foraging behaviors, and performing optogenetic-perturbation of neural populations during foraging behaviors.