Megan Torry


e-mail: megan.torry@uleth.ca
Lab: EP 1213

Biography

I was born and raised in Lethbridge, AB, and received my B.Sc in Neuroscience in 2006. Before returning to school my most recent work (related to Neuroscience) was working in Edmonton doing a collaborative pilot study with Dr. Keir Pearson. The focus was on limb locomotion using a memory paradigm that utilizes area 5 of the posterior parietal cortex and sensory receptor feedback to allow following (hind-limb) muscles to know correct positioning, appropriate torque, and reflexes for successful positioning in space. I have now returned to school to receive my M.Sc. in Dr. Bruce McNaughton’s lab.

Research Interests

My current research focuses on hippocampal input to the layers of the cortex. I want to inactivate the hippocampus using DREADDs, a method that is less invasive than common NMDA lesions and is only activated with the injection of the ligand, CNO. I will use transgenic mice that contain yellow fluorescent protein in cortical pyramidal cells and use a two photon microscope to take an image(s) into cortical tissue of the living animal. Hippocampal activity levels will be deactivated using DREADDs to determine differences in dendritic spines and cortical plasticity, that is thought to represent memory transferred from the hippocampus to the neocortex over time. Behavioural paradigms will be used to induce hippocampal activity to promote states of learning or not learning, dependent on chosen activity level during the experience.

A clearing method for tissue will be used and tissue will be imaged using different types of microscopy. Images will be used for quantification and the creation of stereoscopic images of spines and brain tissue.

Publications

  1. Torry M.E. and Vokey J.R. (2005). Fingerprint Mathcing and Naive Observers. 24th Banff Annual Seminar in Cognitive Science (BASICS) (May 13-14), Banff, AB. (Poster).
  2. Torry M.E.,Wieden H.J., et al. (2009). A Synthetic Future: Microcompartments, Nanoparticles and the Bio-Battery. Presented poster at 1) aGEM Competition and Jamboree, Banff AB. 2) Engineering the future: Synthetic Biology, Ontario genomics institute MARS centre, Toronto ON. 3) iGEM competition and Jamboree, Massachusetts institute of technology, Cambridge. MA.