Skip to main content
Michigan State UniversityBreedlove Jordan lab at MSU

Aaron Welsch

Aaron Welsch

I am a first year graduate student at Michigan State University in the neuroscience program. I am originally from St. Peters, Missouri and received my Bachelor's of Science in chemistry, along with a neuroscience minor from Hope College in May 2006. As an undergraduate, I was introduced to neuroscience by Dr. Leah Chase, with whom I worked with to study a potential model for neurodegenerative diseases. Our model involves a cystine/glutamate exchange pump, system xc-, which is responsible for preventing oxidative stress damage as a result of a buildup of oxygen free radicals within the brain. Using the agonist quisqualic acid (QUIS), we examined the neuroprotective properties of the system xc- pump within different brain regions by examining the motor and learning deficiencies found in rats treated with QUIS.

Since coming to Michigan State, I have become interested in learning about how gonadal hormones effect the brain and behavior, and in particular, the role of androgen receptors (ARs) in mediating these effects. To do this, I am working with the Cre-LoxP system in order to specifically knock the AR gene out of motoneuron tissue. Once this model has been validated, I hope to use this as a way to look at the role of AR in the survival of the spinal nucleus of the bulbocavernosus (SNB) system and also to examine any behavioral deficits seen in mice with this particular knockout.

Outside of the lab I am a proud supporter of the greatest sports team in America, the St. Louis Cardinals. In addition to watching baseball, I enjoy a variety of outdoor activities including golf, soccer, tennis, and downhill skiing. While at Hope I was a member of the varsity swim team and still enjoy getting a few laps in every once and a while.