UR-led rat research gaining national attention

October 23, 2019

Spider Pride

It’s becoming more and more common for national news outlets to call on our professors to share their expertise — and we love it even more when their innovative research makes big headlines too.

Psychology professor Kelly Lambert and her team, including psych professor Laura Knouse, Apple data scientist Beth Crawford, and alum-turned-lab assistant Olivia Harding, ’19, are having a big week because their research into rats — specifically that rats can learn to drive tiny cars — is in CNN, New Scientist, NPR, and even made a Twitter Moment and caught Funny or Die's attention.

But it’s not just about joy rides. Researchers could potentially replace traditional maze tests with more complex driving tasks when using rat models to study neuropsychiatric conditions, Lambert said in the New Scientist article. One example is that their findings could be used to research the effects of Parkinson’s disease on motor skills and spatial awareness.

It goes without saying that we’re honored to be the place where Lambert and others are developing scientific breakthroughs!

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