Portrait of SFARI Investigator Nancy Padilla-Coreano.

Nancy Padilla-Coreano, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, University of Florida

SFARI Investigator Website

Nancy Padilla-Coreano is an assistant professor in the neuroscience department at the University of Florida. Her goal is to understand how the brain gives rise to socially competent behaviors and how disease states disrupt social competency.

Padilla-Coreano has expertise in rodent models for the study of social-emotional behaviors, tools to record and disrupt brain activity and machine learning tools to better understand the relationship between brain activity and behavior. For her doctoral thesis, she worked in the laboratory of Joshua Gordon, where she developed expertise in multi-site electrophysiology and functional connectivity to identify neural patterns associated with anxiety-like behavior. Furthermore, using optogenetics, she discovered that the connection between the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex is necessary for 4 to 12 Hz neural synchrony that emerges during anxious states.

Padilla-Coreano’s work studying how the brain encodes affective and motivated behaviors has been cited over 1,600 times. Her most recent work demonstrates that the prefrontal cortex encodes social competitive success and that the prefrontal connection with the hypothalamus is important to modulate social dominance behaviors.

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