Carrie R Ferrario
Associate Professor of Pharmacology
Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychology
College of Literature, Science, and the Arts
[email protected]

Available to mentor

Carrie R Ferrario
Associate Professor
  • About
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  • Center Memberships
  • Research Overview
  • Recent Publications
  • About

    The Ferrario lab integrates concepts from the addiction, learning, and feeding fields to ask new questions about the neurobiological and behavioral drivers of obesity vs. drug addiction. Specifically, we examine how alterations in glutamatergic transmission within the striatum contribute to normal and aberrant motivation. Our long-term goal is to understand how sugary, fatty foods and physiological changes accompanying obesity alter brain function and behavior, how individual susceptibility to obesity interacts with these effects, and how mechanisms underlying strong urges to eat may be similar to as well as different from those that drive abuse of addictive substances like cocaine.

    Dr. Ferrario is also a member of the following programs at the University of Michigan:
    Domino Addiction Research Center
    Neuroscience Graduate Program
    Neuroscience Innovators
    Multidisciplinary Training Program in Basic Diabetes Research
    NIDA Training Program in Neuroscience

    Center Memberships
    • Center Member
      Caswell Diabetes Institute
    Research Overview

    Neurobiology of motivation, obesity, addiction, glutamate plasticity, striatum

    Recent Publications See All Publications
    • Journal Article
      Role of nucleus accumbens D1-type medium spiny neurons in the expression and extinction of sign-tracking.
      Derman RC, Bryda EC, Ferrario CR. Behav Brain Res, 2024 Feb 29; 459: 114768 DOI:10.1016/j.bbr.2023.114768
      PMID: 37984521
    • Journal Article
      Effects of junk-food on food-motivated behavior and nucleus accumbens glutamate plasticity; insights into the mechanism of calcium-permeable AMPA receptor recruitment.
      Fetterly TL, Catalfio AM, Ferrario CR. Neuropharmacology, 2024 Jan 1; 242: 109772 DOI:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2023.109772
      PMID: 37898332
    • Journal Article
      Cocaine-induced sensitization and glutamate plasticity in the nucleus accumbens core: effects of sex.
      Catalfio AM, Fetterly TL, Nieto AM, Robinson TE, Ferrario CR. Biol Sex Differ, 2023 Jun 24; 14 (1): 41 DOI:10.1186/s13293-023-00525-8
      PMID: 37355656
    • Journal Article
      Applying behavioral economics-based approaches to examine the effects of liquid sucrose consumption on motivation.
      Finnell JE, Ferrario CR. Appetite, 2023 Jul 1; 186: 106556 DOI:10.1016/j.appet.2023.106556
      PMID: 37044175
    • Journal Article
      The Neurobiology of Eating Behavior in Obesity: Mechanisms and Therapeutic Targets: A Report from the 23rd Annual Harvard Nutrition Obesity Symposium.
      Becetti I, Bwenyi EL, de Araujo IE, Ard J, Cryan JF, Farooqi IS, Ferrario CR, Gluck ME, Holsen LM, Kenny PJ, Lawson EA, Lowell BB, Schur EA, Stanley TL, Tavakkoli A, Grinspoon SK, Singhal V. Am J Clin Nutr, 2023 Jul; 118 (1): 314 - 328. DOI:10.1016/j.ajcnut.2023.05.003
      PMID: 37149092
    • Preprint
      Effects of junk-food on food-motivated behavior and NAc glutamate plasticity; insights into the mechanism of NAc calcium-permeable AMPA receptor recruitment.
      Fetterly TL, Catalfio AM, Ferrario CR. 2023 May 17; DOI:10.1101/2023.05.16.540977
      PMID: 37292760
    • Journal Article
      Cocaine-induced plasticity, motivation, and cue responsivity do not differ in obesity-prone vs obesity-resistant rats; implications for food addiction.
      Saraswat AA, Longyear LG, Kawa AB, Ferrario CR. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 2023 Apr; 240 (4): 853 - 870. DOI:10.1007/s00213-023-06327-5
      PMID: 36806961
    • Journal Article
      LabGym: Quantification of user-defined animal behaviors using learning-based holistic assessment.
      Hu Y, Ferrario CR, Maitland AD, Ionides RB, Ghimire A, Watson B, Iwasaki K, White H, Xi Y, Zhou J, Ye B. Cell Rep Methods, 2023 Mar 27; 3 (3): 100415 DOI:10.1016/j.crmeth.2023.100415
      PMID: 37056376
    Featured News & Stories
    Department News
    Dr. Carrie Ferrario featured in MM Health Lab
    Dr. Carrie Ferrario featured in Michigan Medicine Health Lab.
    Department News
    Congratulations to Dr. Carrie Ferrario
    Dr. Carrie R. Ferrario from the University of Michigan awarded the 2023 John J. Abel Award in Pharmacology.