Dr. Cian McCafferty graduated from UCC with a BSc in Neuroscience before completing a PhD in Cardiff University, studying the electrophysiological role of the thalamus in absence epilepsy. He continued his work on absence seizures in a postdoctoral fellowship at the Department of Neurology at Yale University, where he investigated the neuronal and network determinants of the behavioural severity of seizures.
In January 2019 Cian took up a position as Lecturer in the Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience at UCC, where his lab focuses on the neural network mechanisms of the microbiome’s effects on behaviour.
Cian’s primary interest is in the use of meso-scopic neuroscience techniques, which characterize brain activity on the neuron-to-network level, and allow the simultaneous observation of integrated neuronal activity and animal behaviour. His particular interest is in how neuron-to-network activity can be altered positively or negatively by changes to the microbiome, and how this altered neural activity in turn effects changes in behaviour. Cian’s lab currently focuses on animal models of microbiome perturbation and associated mood, anxiety and attention disorder-related behaviours, and the use of in vivo electrophysiology to determine patterns of neuronal firing and inter-neuron interactions in such models.