Janet Dubinsky, PhD

Professor, Department of Neuroscience

Janet Dubinsky

Contact Info


Office Phone 612-625-8447

Office Address:
3-170 Jackson Hall

Lab Address:
3-170 Jackson Hall


Research Summary/Interests

Mitochondrial permeability

Neuroscience Research:

We have examined the involvement of the mitochondrial permeability transition in isolated CNS mitochondria from normal and Huntington's Disease model mice. At the systems level, we are currently examining metabolite changes in brains of Huntington's Disease model mice and how these metabolite changes can be used both as biomarkers for disease progression and to provide insight into mechanisms of disease progression.

A new project is investigating how certain classes of drugs might alter synaptic vesicle availability or cycling as a means of limiting high frequency activity in epilepsy.

Research in Science Teaching:

The field of neuroscience probes the cellular, molecular and circuit properties contributing to learning and memory, processes that should influence teachers’ classroom strategies and practices. Providing professional development for postbaccalaureate teachers into the biological basis of learning and memory applies the new knowledge generated in my field towards solving a pressing societal need, improving K-12 science education. As a research scientist, communicating this knowledge to teacher audiences is a part of translational research. BrainU is a professional development program for K-12 science teachers interested in understanding the brain and its relevance to education (www.brainu.org). BrainU was created in response to requests from teachers to learn more neuroscience than could be covered in one-hour classroom visits. My goals for the BrainU program are to engage teachers both in teaching about and applying neuroscience to their classroom practices and to motivate teachers and their students to learn more about themselves and the pursuit of science. Our research goals are to probe how learning about the nervous system motivates teachers and students to teach, learn and do science in their classrooms.


Dubinsky, JM, Guzey, SS, Schwartz, MS, Roehrig, GH, MacNabb, C, Schmied, A, Hinesley, V, Hoelscher, M, Michlin, M, Schmitt, L, Ellingson, C, Chang, Z & Cooper, JL 2019, 'Contributions of Neuroscience Knowledge to Teachers and Their Practice' Neuroscientist. https://doi.org/10.1177/1073858419835447

Im, SH, Cho, JY, Dubinsky, JM & Varma, S 2018, 'Taking an educational psychology course improves neuroscience literacy but does not reduce belief in neuromyths' PloS one, vol. 13, no. 2, e0192163. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0192163

Schleisman, KB, Selcen Guzey, S, Lie, R, Michlin, M, Desjardins, C, Shackleton, HS, Schwerdfeger, AC, Michalowski, M & Dubinsky, JM 2018, 'Learning Neuroscience with Technology: a Scaffolded, Active Learning Approach' Journal of Science Education and Technology, vol. 27, no. 6, pp. 566-580. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10956-018-9748-y

Dubinsky, JM 2017, 'Towards an Understanding of Energy Impairment in Huntington's Disease Brain' Journal of Huntington's Disease, vol. 6, no. 4, pp. 267-302. https://doi.org/10.3233/JHD-170264

Lou, S, Lepak, VC, Eberly, LE, Roth, B, Cui, W, Zhu, X-H, Oz, G & Dubinsky, JM 2016, 'Oxygen consumption deficit in Huntington disease mouse brain under metabolic stress' Human molecular genetics, vol. 25, no. 13, pp. 2813-2826. https://doi.org/10.1093/hmg/ddw138

Yang, X, Bognar, J, He, T, Mohammed, M, Niespodziany, I, Wolff, C, Esguerra, M, Rothman, SM & Dubinsky, JM 2015, 'Brivaracetam augments short-term depression and slows vesicle recycling' Epilepsia, vol. 56, no. 12, pp. 1899-1909. https://doi.org/10.1111/epi.13223

Yang, X, Meehan, AL, Rothman, SM & Dubinsky, JM 2015, 'Seletracetam enhances short term depression in vitro' Epilepsy Research, vol. 117, pp. 17-22. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eplepsyres.2015.08.006

Abu-Odeh, D, Dziobek, DJ, Jimenez, NT, Barbey, C & Dubinsky, JM 2015, 'Active learning in a neuroethics course positively impacts moral judgment development in undergraduates' Journal of Undergraduate Neuroscience Education, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. A110-A119.

Yang, X, Meehan, AL, Rothman, SM & Dubinsky, JM 2015, 'Seletracetam enhances short term depression in vitro' Epilepsy Research, vol. 117, pp. 17-22. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eplepsyres.2015.08.006

Fitzakerley, JL, Michlin, ML, Paton, J & Dubinsky, JM 2013, 'Neuroscientists' classroom visits positively impact student attitudes' PLoS One, vol. 8, no. 12, e84035. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0084035



NSCI 3001W: Neuroscience and Society (Spring semester); NSCI 4105: Neurobiology Laboratory I (Fall and Summer semesters); NSCI 4167: Neuroscience in the Community (Spring semester).