Lab News

February 2020 Congrats to Monica on having her graduate research on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders recognized in the state legislature! Article can be found here.

January 2020 New article out by lab alumni Jack Madden and Shannon Thompson and in collaboration Dr. Pentkowski lab! “Moderate prenatal alcohol exposure reduces parvalbumin expressing GABAergic interneurons in the dorsal hippocampus of adult male and female rat offspring” is published in Neuroscience Letters.

December 2019 New article out in a special issue of Frontiers in Neural Circuits: “Coding for Spatial Orientation in Humans and Animals: Behavior, Circuits and Neurons”. Link to special issue here.

Our article titled, “A comparison of neural decoding methods and population coding across thalamo-cortical head direction cells”, can be found here.

October 2019 Congrats to Laura on receiving the “Doctoral Conference Presentation Award” from UNM!

see below for details.

September 2019 New article out by graduate student Ryan Harvey and Laura Berkowitz! “The Effects of Developmental Alcohol Exposure on the Neurobiology of Spatial Processing” is published in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews.

August 2019 Congrats to Laura on your admission to the, “2019 Methods in Neuroscience at Dartmouth College (MIND) Computational Neuroscience Summer School”!

This years program is on “Cognitive Maps”!

See below for details.


July 2019 Congratulations to Kim on a great presentation representing the Clark Lab at the McNair Scholars Summer Research Symposium!


June 2019 A Canadian Treat made its way to lab meeting – Nanaimo bars!


June 2019 Cognition, Brain and Behavior RA Appreciation BBQ!

Image from iOS.jpg

Image from iOS (1)

May 2019 Congrats to lab alumni Monica and Maggie on graduating with undergraduate Psychology degrees!


Pictured above: Monica Goncalves-Garcia

May 2019 Congratulations to Jacob Ring and Maggie Austin on completing their Psychology Honors Theses!

Image from iOS (1)

Image from iOS

Jacob received the Rachael Dowler Outstanding Honors Thesis Award!

April 2019 Congratulations to Kim who was inducted into the McNair Scholars Program!


Kimberly Rogge-Obando (far left)

March 2019 Congratulations to Maria who has received admittance into UNM’s combined BA/MD program!

March 2019 Clark Lab at New Mexico Neuroscience Day!


Pictured above: Maria Gabaldon-Parish

Image from iOS

Pictured above: Monica Goncalves-Garcia

February 2019 Dr. Clark visits the Biology Seminar at Northern New Mexico College! Thank you Dr. Ulises Ricoy for the invitation!


January 2019 Congratulations to Ryan in completing his comprehensive exam!

January 2019 Congratulations to Laura in completing her comprehensive exam!


January 2019 Dr. Clark chairs symposium on “Head Direction Cells and Spatial Memory” at the Park City Winter Conference on the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory!


January 2019 New 3D Printer in the Lab for Electrode Fabrication!


December 2018 New article out by graduate student Lilliana Sanchez! “Moderate prenatal alcohol exposure impairs performance in an object-place paired-associate task” is published in Behavioural Brain Research.

November 2018 SFN in San Diego, California!

Image from iOS copy

Image from iOS (1) copy

Image from iOS 2

From Left to Right: Harvey, Berkowitz, Sneddon (lab alumni!), Sanchez, Clark, and Dr. Ryan Yoder

November 2018 Lilliana Sanchez at the Diversity Fellows Poster Session at the Society for Neuroscience meeting!


November 2018 New article out by graduate student Laura Berkowitz! “Progressive impairment of directional and spatially precise trajectories by TgF344-Alzhiemer’s disease rats in the Morris water task” is published in Scientific Reports.

October 2018 Our review paper is out in Behavioral Neuroscience: “The Retrosplenial-Parietal Network and Reference Frame Coordination for Spatial Navigation“.

The article appears in a Special Issue on the Cognitive Functions of the Retrosplenial Cortex

October 2018 New work published with Burke & Maurer labs at the U of Florida!  “Dissociable effects of advanced age on prefrontal cortical and medial temporal lobe ensemble activity” is published in Neurobiology of Aging.

August 2018 Tia Donaldson joins the lab as a graduate student. Welcome Tia!

She is already busy in the lab. Here is some of her work staining amyloid plaques with Thioflavin!

ThioS LB06 HPC

May 2018 New work out from the lab by Ryan Harvey and in Collaboration with Yoder Lab!  “Linear self-motion cues support the distribution and stable firing of hippocampal place cells” is published in Current Biology.

March 2018 New review paper out from the lab by Shannon Thompson and Laura Berkowitz! “Behavioral and neural subsystems of rodent exploration” is published in Learning and Motivation.

Special Issue: Ethological approaches to studying psychological phenomena


March 2018 Clark lab attends the Alcohol and Nervous System Gordon Research Conference in Galveston Texas.


December 2017 Laura Berkowitz is awarded an Outstanding Service to the Community Award and Ryan Harvey receives an award for Publication in Highest Impact Paper  by a graduate student!

November 2017 The lab at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Washington, DC!


November 2017 Graduate student Lilliana Sanchez at the Diversity Fellows Poster Session in Washington, DC!


November 2017 New work out from the lab!  “Anxiety-like behavior as an early endophenotype in the TgF344-AD rat model of Alzheimer’s disease” is published in Neurobiology of Aging.

November 2017 Congrats to grad student Lilliana Sanchez in receiving the Carl Storm Fellowship for her attendance at Alcohol and Nervous System 2018! 

October 2017 Head Direction Cell Birthday Cake!


August 2017 The lab is awarded a grant from the Alzheimer’s Association Research Grant program! Our work will investigate the impact of Alzheimer’s disease on head direction cells.


August 2017 Congrats to graduate student Lilliana Sanchez in being selected as a fellow with the SfN Neuroscience Scholars Program!

July 2017 Congrats to Ryan Harvey on receiving a T32 graduate training fellowship from NIAAA and the Alcohol Training Program in Neuroscience at the University of New Mexico!  Ryan will be working on better understanding the impact of prenatal alcohol on hippocampal-parahippocampal place, grid, and head direction signals.


July 2017 Jonathan Goss is hired as a Research Technician.  Jonathan will be working on our newly funded NIAAA project investigating the impact of prenatal alcohol on hippocampal-parahippocampal spatial representations. Welcome Jonathan! 

July 2017 Our new commentary on the recent work by Alexander and Nitz is now published!  Our paper titled “Spatial navigation: retrosplenial cortex encodes the spatial structure of complex routes” is published in Current Biology.

June 2017 New collaborative work published with the Burke and Maurer labs at the University of Florida!  “Age-related changes in lateral entorhinal and CA3 neuron allocation predict poor performance on object discrimination” is published in Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience.

June 2017 The lab at the Research Society on Alcoholism meeting in Denver, CO!



June 2017 The lab is awarded a grant from the New Mexico IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (NM-INBRE) Program! Our work will investigate spatial disorientation in Alzheimer’s disease using high-density electrophysiological recordings and optogenetic manipulations of neural circuits!


May 2017 Congrats to B.A./B.Sc. graduates from the lab, Elizabeth Sneddon, Tanner Rigg, Emma Geck, John Madden, and Jonathan Goss!


May 2017 Undergraduate RA appreciation BBQ hosted by the lab graduate students!


May 2017 Laura Berkowitz successfully defends her Master’s thesis on a longitudinal assessment of spatial memory in the TgF344-AD rat model of Alzheimer’s disease!

April 2017 Congrats to PREP student Shannon Thompson and undergraduate research assistant Elizabeth Sneddon for accepting graduate positions at Miami University!

March 2017 Ryan Harvey and Lilliana Sanchez win awards for their presentations at UNM Psychology Research Day!

March 2017 Congratulations to graduate student Laura Berkowitz for being recognized as an Honorable Mention in the 2017 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship program

March 2017 Ryan Harvey publishes his Master’s Thesis work! “Post-training inactivation of the anterior thalamic nuclei impairs spatial performance on the radial arm maze” is published in Frontiers in Neuroscience.


January 2017  The lab is awarded an R21 from NIAAA investigating the consequences of prenatal alcohol exposure on spatial representations and place cell firing in the hippocampus!

Collaborators: Dr. Derek Hamilton and Dr. Dan Savage 


12/2016  Laura Berkowitz is awarded an Outstanding Service to the Community Award!


12/2016 Elizabeth Sneddon is awarded an Undergraduate Research Initiative Award!

11/2016 Ryan Harvey successfully defends his Master’s thesis on the spatial memory functions of the anterior thalamus!

11/2016 The lab at the Society for Neuroscience meeting!




10/2016 Grid Cell Birthday Cake!


09/2016 Lilliana Sanchez and Shannon Thompson publish their first paper in the lab! “Influence of proximal, distal, and vestibular frames of reference in object-place paired associate learning in the rat” is published in PLoS ONE.

09/2016  Ryan Harvey publishes his first paper in the lab! “Do the anterior and lateral thalamic nuclei make distinct contributions to spatial representation and memory?” is published in Neurobiology of Learning and Memory.


08/2016  Ryan Harvey, Lilliana Sanchez, and Elizabeth Sneddon are awarded travel funds from SCAP to attend the Society for Neuroscience Meeting in San Diego

08/2016  New graduate student Lilliana Sanchez joins the Lab! 

07/2016  “A methodological pipeline for serial-section imaging and tissue realignment for whole-brain functional and connectivity assessment” is published in Journal of Neuroscience Methods.


07/2016  The lab is awarded pilot project funding from the New Mexico Alcohol Research Center and NIAAA.

04/2016  Ryan Harvey is awarded a Presentation Award for his Poster at UNM Psychology Research Day!


10/2015  “Passive transport disrupts grid cell signals in the parahippocampal cortex” is published in Current Biology.

08/2015  PREP student Shannon Thompson joins the Lab! 

08/2015  New graduate students Ryan Harvey and Laura Berkowitz join the Lab! 

07/2015  “Maintained directional navigation across environments in the Morris water task is dependent on vestibular cues” is published in JEP-ALC.

04/2015  The lab is awarded pilot project funding from the BRaIN Imaging Center and NIGMS.

02/2015  “Disruption of the head direction cell network impairs the parahippocampal grid cell signal” is published in ScienceCoverage by The Scientist and Science Daily.


01/2015  “Cortical connectivity maps reveal anatomically distinct areas in the parietal cortex of the rat” is published in Frontiers in Neural Circuits

11/2014  The lab is awarded pilot project funding from the New Mexico Alcohol Research Center and NIAAA.

08/2014  Dr. Clark attends the 1st Interdisciplinary Navigation Symposium (iNAV) in Lisbon Portugal.


08/2014  Dr. Clark joins the Department of Psychology at the University of New Mexico!