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Building blocks of the brain: Insights into how the brain functions
Our brains control everything about us - our movements, our emotions, and our memories. These complex behaviours are generated by the coordinated action of billions of individual brain cells called neurons. Each neuron functions like a tiny computer relaying information from one part of the brain to another. When these neurons fail to function properly, this results in devastating neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, dementia, or depression. Because we don’t know enough about how brain cells work, when they malfunction, the clinical treatments are often poor or ineffective. Dr Iremonger will discuss research that is shedding new light on how healthy brain cells function. This basic biomedical research is leading to a more complete understanding of how the brain works and is in turn the development of new drug targets and treatments for neurological disorders.
ABOUT DR KARL IREMONGER
Dr Karl Iremonger completed an undergraduate degree in Physical Education and Physiology at the University of Otago. He then moved to Calgary, Canada where he completed a MSc and a PhD in Neuroscience. In 2010, he returned to the University of Otago to work on a project studying hypothalamic neurons which control fertility. In 2014, Karl established his own laboratory investigating neural circuits in the brain that control stress responses.