We are a group of geneticists, neuroscientists, and computer scientists who are passionate about discoveries of novel targets and models for mental illness through innovation at the confluence of computational, genetic, and genomic methods.
The Kumar Laboratory is located at the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine. We study neural circuits in the brain whose misregulation leads to behavioral abnormalities including addiction, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, and depression. Using mouse molecular genetics as a foundation, and a combination of biochemistry, physiology, and imaging techniques we dissect these complex behaviors in mammals.
We use two functional genomics approaches in mice – forward genetic ethylnitrosourea (ENU) mutagenesis screens and quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis – to identify genes and pathways that regulate these behaviors. Powerful and unbiased, forward genetic approaches make no a priori assumptions and only require a clear well-defined assay for gene discovery. We have used high-throughput screening pipeline to discover mutants for cocaine response and open field behavior. Using physical mapping followed by next generation sequencing we have identified novel genes and alleles that regulate cocaine response and anxiety related behaviors.
Latest Lab News:
Vivek gave a lecture on the genetics of addiction at the Causeway Club on behalf of Acadia Family Center. The talk was attended by approximately 50 people. Dr. Dick Dimond also gave a talk preceding Vivek's talk.
Vivek attended and presented at the CTC meeting in UCSD. The CTC meeting is an annual meeting of complex trait geneticists who use model organisms. Vivek spoke on the use of computer vision to extract heritable ethological endophenotypes from mice. The meeting has...
The paper is currently under review and we hope it is published soon. Meanwhile, the preprint is available here. https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/648295v1