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CBN Plays Key Role in Development of Georgia State's Neuroscience Institute

August 2008 - Since its inception in 1999, the Center for Behavioral Neuroscience (CBN) has played a key role in supporting neuroscience initiatives at all its member institutions including Georgia State University with the development of the Brains and Behavior Program in 2004 and most recently with the creation of the Neuroscience Institute.

The Institute, which emerged from the Brains and Behavior Program, will be a new part of Georgia State University designed to gather GSU neuroscience faculty into a single administrative home to support their research and provide new degree programs to GSU students.

“I don’t think the Institute would have ever been formed if CBN had not helped neuroscience at GSU develop into such a strong component of the University,” said Walt Wilczynski, Ph.D., Neuroscience Institute director, CBN co-director for research, and a GSU psychology professor. “The Center did this by supporting GSU’s efforts to hire more neuroscience faculty, providing neuroscience fellowships for graduate students in several departments, and supplying research funds to faculty and students which allowed their research to become nationally recognized.”

In turn, the Institute will help the CBN advance its mission of developing strong collaborative and cross-institutional neuroscience research and education components at each of its member institutions, Wilczynski said.

“Creation of the Institute will be especially beneficial to CBN student members at GSU as it enhances neuroscience graduate training at the University with the formation of a new neuroscience Ph.D. program,” he said. “The Institute’s long range plan is to develop an undergraduate neuroscience major as well, but it will be a few years before undergraduates will be able to declare a major in neuroscience.”

Wilczynski stressed that the Institute is not replacing the CBN at Georgia State, but that the two programs will pool their resources and continue to address the growing demand for information on the brain and research of possible treatments for behavioral disorders.

“Like the CBN as a whole, GSU’s Neuroscience Institute is keenly aware of the importance of a relationship with Georgia’s biotech industry. We’re helping to train the next generation of neuroscience researchers and plan to join with the CBN in new initiatives that will connect research in academic labs with industry interests, and neuroscience students with the needs of the private sector.”

For more information on the Institute email: wwilczynski@gsu.edu.

Photo courtesy Carolyn Richardson, Photographer, Georgia State University

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