J. David Jentsch, PhD
Dr. Jentsch is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Brain Research Institute at UCLA. He earned his Ph.D. in Neurobiology from the Yale University School of Medicine in 1999. He has published more than 50 papers and chapters describing his basic neuroscience research on the neural basis of memory, attention and decision making, with a special emphasis on the genetic and neurochemical mechanisms that underlie poor cognition in mental disorders.
The goal of my research is to understand the physiological mechanisms that underlie the naturally-occurring variation in complex behavior and cognition (attention, memory, etc.). From genius to dementia, there is enormous variation in these traits across human and animal populations, and this variation is explained by genetic and environmental factors, as well as by their interplay. Using neurochemical, genetic and behavioral techniques, we are working to uncover how basic neural mechanisms control complex cognition and how genetic and environmental factors sculpt those mechanisms.