Steven Maier is a University of Colorado Distinguished Professor
and the Director of the Center for Neuroscience. He received
his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1968 and
has been at the University of Colorado since 1973. He has
received numerous awards including the Norman Cousins and
the Neal Miller Distinguished Lectureships, and is a Fellow
of the APA, APS, and AAAS. He has held both career and MERIT
awards from the NIH, has served on numerous NIH study sections,
and has edited and been on the editorial boards of numerous
journals. He has authored or co-authored over 250 scientific
papers and 300 abstracts.
Dr. Maier's research falls into two broad areas. One centers
on interactions between the brain and the immune system, with
study of both how the brain regulates immune processes and
how products of immune cells signal the brain. Current emphasis
is on understanding the mechanisms of immune-to-brain signaling
at pathway, cellular and molecular levels, and the implications
of these signaling pathways for understanding stress, mood
disturbances, cognitive impairment. and exaggerated pain states
The other main area centers on an exploration of the variables
that modulate the impact of stressors on brain chemistry and
the neurochemical mechanisms by which stressors alter behavior,
mood, and the organismÈs reactions to drugs of abuse. The
focus is on the degree of behavioral control that organisms
can exert over stressors (i.e., "learned helplessness") and
the role of serotonergic systems in mediating the impact of
this variable on behavior, mood, and reactions to drugs of
abuse. The work on stress-drug interactions involves the study
of serotonin-dopamine interactions as an important component.
This work utilizes techniques at the behavioral, systems,
cellular, and molecular levels.
Barrientos, R. M., Higgins, E., Sprunger, D., Watkins, L.
R., Rudy, J. W., & Maier, S. F. (2002). Interleukin-1b
impairs hippocampal memory consolidation. Behavioral Neuroscience,
Hammack, S. E., Richey. K. J., Watkins, L. R., & Maier,
S. F. (2002). The role of corticotropin releasing hormone
in the dorsal raphe nucleus in mediating the behavioral consequences
of uncontrollable stress. Journal of Neuroscience, 22, 1020-1026.
Amat, J., Sparks, P. D., Matus-Amat, P., Griggs J., Watkins,
L. R., & Maier, S. F. (2001). The role of the habenular
complex in the elevation of dorsal raphe nucleus serotonin
and interference with escape behavior. Brain Research, 917
Pugh, C. R., Fleshner, M., Watkins L. R., Maier, S. F. &
Rudy, J. W. (2001). The immune system and memory consolidation:
A role for the cytokine IL-1b. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral
Reviews, 25, 29-41.