Our research is focused in understanding how natural behavior emerges from the interaction between an organism's history (evolution), its genes, its nervous system, and its environment. Understanding of the basic principles governing these interactions will allow us to gain insight into how animals work (including humans).
Currently we are working several projects based on natural behaviors worms share with many other organisms, and on human pathologies for which the use of invertebrates can be a useful genetic model:
1) Molecular mechanisms of muscle degeneration and protection during Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
2) Animal detection and use the magnetic field or the earth.
3) Adaptation of molecular and genetic techniques to the study of crustacean neuroscience.
Please click on the tabs on the left to learn amore about our research program. Understanding the principles governing the production of successful behavior will generate insights that will be valuable in a wide variety of ways: from restoring motor function following injury or disease, to designing intelligent machines that can respond to unexpected environmental challenges.
NSF MCB 1818140. Vidal-Gadea (PI). 07/01/2018 - 06/30/2023. Neuronal and molecular basis for magnetic transduction in the nematode C. elegans.
1R15AR068583-01A1. Vidal-Gadea (PI). 06/01/2016 - 05/31/2020. Genetic Repair of Muscular Degeneration Associated with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.
Pre-tenure Faculty Initiative Grant - ISU. Vidal-Gadea (PI). Effects of Mars' magnetic and gravitational fields of terrestrial organisms. (2018).
College of Arts and Science Interdisciplinary Initiative Grant- ISU. Vidal-Gadea (PI). Harnessing our research programs to improve scientific literacy in our community. (2018).
New Faculty Initiative Grant - ISU. Vidal-Gadea (PI). Identification of a suppressor mutation responsible for the repair of mobility and the prevention of muscle degeneration in an animal model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. (2016).