Armando Salinas, PhD
Assistant Professor of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neuroscience
Bachelor of Science, Neurobiology (2005) - University of Texas at Austin
Bachelor of Arts, Government (2006) - University of Texas at Austin
PhD, Neuropharmacology (2013) - University of Texas at Austin
Post-Doctoral Fellow (2013-2021) - George Mason University & the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
The Salinas lab studies the role of the basal ganglia in neurodegenerative disorders and motivated behaviors, including alcohol and substance use disorders. More specifically, we are interested in the interaction of neurotransmitter systems (e.g. dopamine and acetylcholine) to modulate synaptic plasticity and the neural circuits that shape behavior under normal and pathological conditions. The lab employs traditional pharmacology, behavior, electrophysiology and electrochemistry techniques coupled with chemo- and optogenetic tools (including fluorescent biosensors for various neurotransmitters) to carry out our research objectives.
The lab is currently funded by a NIH K99R00 Pathway to Independence and R03 grants to study the role of striatal cholinergic interneurons in chronic alcohol-induced cognitive deficits in mouse and nonhuman primate models. The overarching hypothesis is that chronic alcohol exposure will result in hypofunctional striatal cholinergic circuits that contribute to cognitive flexibility deficits observed in alcohol use disorder. Thus, we expect that chemogenetic activation of striatal cholinergic interneurons will rescue striatal cholinergic function and ameliorate cognitive flexibility deficits. Other studies in the lab will explore the role of striosome and matrix compartments of the striatum in reinforcement and motivated behaviors. We will also follow up on previous work examining the beneficial effects of a ketone ester-enriched diet on motor and nonmotor Parkinsonian symptoms. If interested, please feel free to read specific project descriptions on the lab website and reach out with any questions.
- Sun F, Salinas AG, Filser S, Blumenstock S, Herms J, Sgobio C. (2021) Impact of α-synuclein spreading on the nigrostriatal dopaminergic pathway depends on the onset of the pathology. Brain Pathology. Accepted. DOI: 10.1111/bpa.13036
- Salinas AG, Mateo Y, Cuzon Carlson VC, Stinnett GS, Luo G, Seasholtz AF, Grant KA, Lovinger DM. (2021) Long-term alcohol consumption alters dorsal striatal dopamine release and regulation by D2 dopamine receptors in rhesus macaques. Neuropsychopharmacology. 46, 1432-1441
- Salinas AG and Mateo Y. (2020) Regionally distinct dopamine release dynamics between striosome and matrix compartments of the striatum: Role in basal ganglia disorders. “Compendium of In Vivo Monitoring in Real-time Molecular Neuroscience, Vol. III” Wilson, G.S. and Michael, A.C., Eds., World Scientific Publishing Co., Singapore, 2020.
- Blackwell KT, Salinas AG, Tewatia P, English B, Hellgren-Kotaleski J, Lovinger DM. (2019) Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Striatal Synaptic Plasticity: Relevance to Chronic Alcohol Consumption and Seeking. European Journal of Neuroscience. 49 (6): 768-783.
- Abrahao KP*, Salinas AG*, Lovinger DM. (2017) Alcohol and the brain: molecular targets, synapses, and circuits. Neuron. 96 (6): 1223-1238. *equal contribution
- Sgobio C, Wu J, Zheng W, Chen X, Pan J, Salinas AG, Davis MI, Lovinger DM, Cai H. (2017) Aldehyde dehydrogenase 1-positive nigrostriatal dopaminergic fibers exhibit distinct projection pattern and dopamine release dynamics in mouse dorsal striatum. Scientific Reports. 7, 5283.
- Hawes SL, Salinas AG, Lovinger DM, Blackwell KT. (2017) Long term plasticity of corticostriatal synapses is modulated by pathway-specific co-release of opioids through kappa-opioid receptors. Journal of Physiology. 595 (16): 5637-5652.
- Salinas AG, Davis MI, Lovinger DM, Mateo Y. (2016) Dopamine release and cocaine sensitivity differ between striosome and matrix compartments of the striatum. Neuropharmacology. 108: 275-83.
- Salinas AG, Nguyen CTQ, Ahmadi-Tehrani D, Morrisett RA. (2014) Reduced ethanol consumption and preference in cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) knockout mice. Addiction Biology. 19 (2): 175-84.
- Salinas A, Wilde JD, Maldve RE. (2006) Ethanol enhancement of cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript mRNA and peptide expression in the Nucleus Accumbens. Journal of Neurochemistry. 97 (2): 408-415.
Complete List of my Published Work in MyBibliography: LEARN MORE
While we are not currently recruiting Post-doctoral Fellows, quality candidates will always be considered. To enquire about opportunities, contact Dr. Salinas at Armando.Salinas@lsuhs.edu.
Graduate students interested in conducting research in the Salinas Lab should review the current laboratory research directions and contact Dr. Salinas at Armando.Salinas@lsuhs.edu.
Medical Students, Residents and Fellows
The Salinas lab has a limited number of research projects available for medical students, residents, and fellows interested in the neurobiology of alcohol use disorder.
We are looking for a research associate to join the lab and assist with ongoing projects. Interested applicants should reach out to Dr. Salinas to learn more about the position and projects at Armando.Salinas@lsuhs.edu.
Undergraduate Research Assistants
We are not currently hiring any additional undergraduates. However, positions can become available during the summer.
LSU Health Shreveport
Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neuroscience
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA 71103