about icvs | People | ID4360


Name: Carina Cunha

Office: I2.03

School Phone: +351 604 835

Email: id4360@alunos.uminho.pt




Keywords: prenatal stress dopamine mesolimbic system mesocortical system glucocorticoids reward


I am a PhD student at the ICVS and i am currently interested in studying the effects of early life stress in the development of specific neuropsychiatric conditions, in particular those associated with reward-associated behaviours and drug-seeking behaviour. My focus now is on the study of the mesolimbic and mesocortical dopaminergic circuitries in the brain and the comprehension of the relation between the impairment in the dopaminergic neurotransmission caused by in utero exposure to glucocorticoids (iuGC) and the vulnerability for the development of drug-seeking behaviour/addiction.
I am also interested in pharmacologically and genetically manipulate the dopaminergic system in order to revert some of the behavioural traits of iuGC exposed animals and normalize the system.

Selected Publications

Soares-Cunha C, Coimbra B, Sousa N, Rodrigues AJ. Reappraising striatal D1- and D2-neurons in reward and aversion. Neurosci Biobehav Rev, 68:370-386 (2016)

Borges S, Coimbra B, Soares-Cunha C, Pego JM, Sousa N, Rodrigues AJ. Dopaminergic modulation of affective and social deficits induced by prenatal glucocorticoid exposure. Neuropsychopharmacology, 38(10):2068-79

Duarte-Silva S, Silva-Fernandes A, Neves-Carvalho A, Soares-Cunha C, Teixeira-Castro A, Maciel P. Combined therapy with m-TOR-dependent and -independent autophagy inducers causes neurotoxicity in a mouse model of Machado-Joseph disease. Neuroscience, 313:162-173 (2016).

Almeida AJ, Cunha C, Carmona JA, Sampaio-Marques B, Carvalho A, Malavazi I, Steensma HY, Johnson DI, Leão C, Logarinho E, Goldman GH, Castro AG, Ludovico P, Rodrigues F. Cdc42p controls yeast-cell shape and virulence of Paracoccidioides brasiliensis. Fungal Genet Biol. 2009 Dec;46(12):919-26. doi: 10.1016/j.fgb.2009.08.004. Epub 2009 Aug 15.

Duarte-Silva S, Neves-Carvalho A, Soares-Cunha C, Teixeira-Castro A, Oliveira P, Silva-Fernandes A, Maciel P. Lithium chloride therapy fails to improve motor function in a transgenic mouse model of Machado-Joseph disease. Cerebellum, 13(6):713-27 (2014)

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