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Research Group
Neural Circuits of Social Behaviour
Unit Unit Cellular and Systems Neurobiology »

Principal Investigator Ph.D. Investigator Graduate students / Research Assistant Technician
Research Fields

Social interactions shape the way we perceive, feel and learn about the world, and despite its importance for social species, we still know very little about how the brain computes social information. Our lab is interested in understanding the mechanisms of how social behaviour shapes our brain, and for this, we focus on cooperative social interactions in rodents. We have recently demonstrated that Norway rats display prosocial behaviours in food foraging context, providing food to conspecifics, and identified the proximal mechanisms at the level of behaviour (Marquez et al, Current Biology, 2015). Current and future projects aim to identify the neural circuits responsible for this fascinating social decision-making, using a combination of behavioural, anatomical, pharmacological, imaging and optogenetic tools in rodents.

Representative Publications

Thomas Akam , Andy Lustig, James Rowland, Sampath K.T. Kapanaiah, Joan Esteve-Agraz, Mariangela Panniello, Cristina Márquez, Michael Kohl, Dennis Kätzel, Rui M. Costa, Mark Walton. " pyControl: Open source, Python based, hardware and software for controlling behavioural neuroscience experiments. " BioRxiv . doi: , 10.1101/2021.02.22.432227 - ( 2021 )

Costa, DF , Moita MA, Márquez C* " Novel Competition test for food rewards reveals stable dominance status in rats. " BiorXiv . doi: , - 10.1101/2020.09.24.312033 ( 2020 ) * Corresponding author

Tzanoulinou S , Gantelet E, Sandi C, Márquez C* " Programming effects of peripubertal stress on spatial learning. " Neurobiology of Stress . 13 , 100282 - ( 2020 ) * Corresponding author

Andreia Cruz , Mirjam Heinemans, Cristina Márquez and Marta A. Moita. " Freezing Displayed by Others Is a Learned Cue of Danger Resulting from Co-experiencing Own Freezing and Shock. " Current Biology . 30 , 1 - 8 ( 2020 )

Cristina Marquez* , Rennie S, Costa D, Moita M.* " Prosocial choice in rats depends on food-seeking behaviour displayed by recipients. " Current Biology . 25(13) , 1736 - 1745 ( 2015 ) * Co-Corresponding author
Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas
Universidad Miguel Hernández

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