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Address 2 :
Title : Dr.
First Name : BRIANA
Last Name : CARROLL
University/Institution : University of Chicago
Phone # : 7738993993
Email ID : brianajcarroll@uchicago.edu
City : Chicago
Country : United States
State : Illinois
Zipcode : 60657
Department : Neurobiology
Company Name :
Area of Research
Area of Expertise
Neural circuits
Brief Description of Research Interest :

My research experience follows a common theme: how neural systems are specialized to suit processing needs. I was first drawn to this question during an undergraduate research project in the McCormick lab, examining anatomical differences in brainstem somatosensory systems between fish with and without electrosensation. I decided to pursue graduate work in another brainstem sensory system with well-understood functional specializations, the chick auditory brainstem. Initially attracted to this system’s anatomical and structural specializations towards sound processing, I came to appreciate of its physiological specializations and gravitate towards physiological experiments. During my graduate work in the Hyson lab, I mastered in vitro slice preparation, electrical stimulation, patch-clamp recordings, and the development of models based on electrophysical data.


I currently hold a postdoctoral position in the Sherman lab where I work towards functional clarification of processing performed by thalamocortical circuits. Convergence of multiple inputs, such as those arising from the transthalamic and direct pathways, is a hallmark of these circuits. During my first two years in the Sherman lab, I have documented novel examples of such convergence, using viral tracing of layer 5 cortical neurons to demonstrate that terminals from distinct cortical areas overlap in many thalamic nuclei, work which is currently in manuscript. However, how so many inputs are integrated remains poorly understood and, I believe, represents a specialization that will clarify the processing these circuits perform. This is the topic of my ongoing research.

Representative Publications :

J.A. Prasad*, B.J. Carroll*, S.M. Sherman. 2020. Layer 5 corticofugal projections from diverse cortical areas: variations on a pattern of thalamic and extra-thalamic targets. The Journal of Neuroscience. 40(30):5785-5796.

*Shared first authorship


B.J. Carroll, R. Bertram, and R.L. Hyson. 2018. Intrinsic changes in inhibitory brainstem neurons during auditory development. Journal of Neurophysiology. 119(1):290-304.


B.J. Carroll. 2017. ‘Changes in ion channel expression following the onset of hearing’ in L.M. Bianchi, ed., Developmental Neurobiology, Garland Science, 315.


B.J. Carroll and R.L. Hyson. 2016. A role for inhibition in deafness-induced plasticity of the avian auditory brainstem. Neuroscience. 327:10-19.