Laura Hurley

Laura Hurley

Associate Professor, Biology

Director, REU Program in Animal Behavior

  • lhurley@indiana.edu
  • (812) 856-1991
  • Jordan Hall 243
  • Office Hours
    M-F
    By Appointment Only

Education

  • Ph.D., University of Washington, 1997

About

Sensory systems demonstrate an amazing ability to filter environmental information depending on the prevailing context. This ability allows animals to act appropriately in situations such as interaction with members of their species, or in response to potential threats. Sensory filtering is also important in human perception, as in hearing and understanding speech during social interactions, and in disorders in such perceptual processes. Work in my lab explores a neurochemical signal, serotonin, which is one of the mechanisms allowing the auditory system to filter important information. We are interested in the function of serotonin-auditory interactions, how these are influenced by behavioral context, and how they change the way the auditory system interprets behaviorally relevant information. In order to address these issues, we use a range of techniques from analysis of social behavior and vocalizations in mice, to several types of electrophysiological measurements. Our work strongly benefits from the excellent intellectual environment on campus, and by our membership in interdisciplinary groups including the Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior and the Program in Neuroscience. In particular, we have a great local strength on mechanisms of behavior. To learn more about specific projects taking place in our lab and opportunities to participate, please explore the lab website.