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Next Annual Symposium: March 24-25, 2018

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Brain Day: Monday, March 14, 2011 VCU (Commonwealth Ballroom, Student Commons)

The VCU Biopsychology program hosted the 5th annual Brain Day Conference in conjunction with National Brain Awareness Week.  The conference featured two guest speakers and a poster/demonstration session by the 200 high school student participants.  Brain Day is a unique one-day conference on topics related to the brain and behavior and is a partnership between VCU Biopsychology Program and Henrico County Public Schools (HCPS).  Attending were AP Psychology students from Hermitage H.S., Godwin H.S. and the VCU dual-enrollment students at the Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School who take the VCU psychology course Physiological Psychology (PSYC 401).  This year’s featured speakers were Jill Bettinger, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, VCU who spoke on “What Drunk Worms Can Tell Us about Drinking: the Molecular Neurobiology of Ethanol Response” and Kelly G. Lambert, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Psychology, Randolph-Macon College who spoke on “Prehistoric Prozac: Lessons From the Trust Fund Rats.”    The student participants presented over 50 posters on various topics related to the neurobiological basis of behavior such as: depression, synesthesia, emotions, addiction, taste preferences, visual procession, attention and the brain and music.  Of special interest were the student demonstrations of neural firing of cockroach limbs using “Spiker boxes” in which students can actually hear neuronal firing and visually see it on computer sine wave programs.  The conference was directed by Joseph H. Porter, PhD and Tim Donahue, graduate student in Biopsychology.