Fight or flight – is it all to do about stress? Our brains assess risk and learn from past experiences to either avoid dangerous situations or learn to fear them less.
A certain neuron (Corticotropin-releasing hormone [CRH]) that controls stress also affects risk assessment and anxiety states. Dr Joon Kim of the University of Otago is currently investigating if high-stress neuron activity drives irrational fear and avoidance.
In this Discovery Session, Joon will be answering some key questions about stress and our brain. What is stress? What happens to the brain when we experience stress? And how his work on Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) neurons in the hypothalamus may be connected to the fight or flight response and assessing risk.
Meet the presenter: Dr Joon Kim
Dr Joon Kim is currently a Research Fellow at the Department of Physiology at the University of Otago working in Dr Karl Iremonger’s lab. He completed both his Bachelor of Science (2012) and Postgraduate Diploma in Science in Anatomy (2013) at the University of Otago as well. In 2020 he received the Brain Health Research Centre’s Emerging Research Award for his current research in Dr Iremonger’s lab on stress. His research specifically looks at understanding how neural and behavioural responses to stress are regulated.