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2015 NSF Graduate Research Fellow Ashleigh Lussenden

Ashleigh Lussenden

Ashleigh Lussenden

Grad program: Neuroscience
Undergrad: BA in Biology (Neuroscience), BA in Psychology (Cognitive Neurosciences), University of Denver
Hometown: Denver, CO
Advisor: David Talmage and co-advisor Lorna Role

How does it feel to earn an NSF GRF?
I feel honored to be awarded this fellowship and excited to join the incredible group of GRFP awardees from the past and present.

What will you research and how might it benefit the world?
My research centers around the role of Type III Neuregulin 1, a protein which is crucial in neuronal development and subsequent function. Understanding how the brain develops is key to understanding the underlying circuitry and function of the brain as a whole, and may help to decrease the stigma associated with any mental health disorders associated with aberrant development.

What sparked your interest in your research, or science in general?
Science has always been of great interest to me, an interest which really blossomed into a love for developmental neuroscience during my undergraduate years. I find myself constantly in awe of the intricate coordination, plasticity and restraint the developing brain goes through in order to form a functioning system, and can only hope to showcase that amazing process during my time as an NSF GRF and my career.

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