- Areas of Speciality
- Affective Science
- Behavioral & Cellular Neuroscience
- (979) 458-0240
- ILSB 3151B
- Professional Links
- Office Hours
- Office hours for Spring 2022 Tuesday 1:30-2:30pm or by appointment via Zoom on Canvas
- Accepting Students
- Yes for 2022-2023
- Behavioral neuroscience of addiction
- Habitual and compulsive cocaine seeking
- Neural mechanisms of motivated behavior
- My primary research interests are the neurobiological mechanisms of drug addiction and the compulsive behaviors and maladaptive habits associated with this psychiatric disorder. A central theme of my research thus far has been investigating the neurocircuitry and transmitter systems underlying drug seeking. The lab uses animal models of addiction, including the rat self-administration paradigm. We analyze behavior and neural circuits related to addiction, and make use of tools in pharmacology, immunohistochemistry, anatomical tracing, and optogenetics/DREADDs.
- Cruz AM, Spencer HF, Kim TH, Jhou TC, Smith RJ. Prelimbic cortical projections to rostromedial tegmental nucleus play a suppressive role in cue-induced reinstatement of cocaine seeking. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2021 Jul;46(8):1399-1406. doi: 10.1038/s41386-020-00909-z.
- Cruz AM, Kim TH, Smith RJ. Monosynaptic Retrograde Tracing From Prelimbic Neuron Subpopulations Projecting to Either Nucleus Accumbens Core or Rostromedial Tegmental Nucleus. Front Neural Circuits. 2021;15:639733. doi: 10.3389/fncir.2021.639733.
- Smith RJ, Anderson RI, Haun HL, Mulholland PJ, Griffin WC 3rd, Lopez MF, Becker HC. Dynamic c-Fos changes in mouse brain during acute and protracted withdrawal from chronic intermittent ethanol exposure and relapse drinking. Addict Biol. 2020 Nov;25(6):e12804. doi: 10.1111/adb.12804.
- Smith RJ, Vento PJ, Chao YS, Good CH, Jhou TC. Gene expression and neurochemical characterization of the rostromedial tegmental nucleus (RMTg) in rats and mice. Brain Struct Funct. 2019 Jan;224(1):219-238. doi: 10.1007/s00429-018-1761-7.
- Smith RJ, Laiks LS. Behavioral and neural mechanisms underlying habitual and compulsive drug seeking. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2018 Dec 20;87(Pt A):11-21. doi: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2017.09.003.