Audrey Seasholtz, PhD
Professor Emerita of Biological Chemistry
Research Professor Emerita
Michigan Neuroscience Institute
Michigan Neuroscience Institute
109 Zina Pitcher Place, Room 5035
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
[email protected]

Available to mentor

Audrey Seasholtz, PhD
Research Professor Emeritus/a
  • About
  • Links
  • Qualifications
  • Center Memberships
  • Research Overview
  • Recent Publications
  • About

    Audrey Seasholtz obtained her BS in biochemistry from Juniata College in Pennsylvania. She performed her graduate studies in Biological Chemistry at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She then moved to Oregon for postdoctoral studies in molecular neurobiology at University of Oregon and OHSU with Dr. Edward Herbert and Dr. James Douglass. She returned to the University of Michigan 4 years later for a position as Assistant Research Scientist in the Mental Health Research Institute and Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Chemistry. She moved through the ranks to Professor of Biological Chemistry and Research Professor in the Michigan Neuroscience Institute. She trained many graduate students (PhD and MS) and undergraduate students in her laboratory through the Biological Chemistry Department, the Cell and Molecular Biology Training Program and the Neuroscience Graduate Program. She taught medical students for 35 years and served as Associate Director or Interim Director of the Neuroscience Graduate Program from 2014 to 2021. She continues to serve in multiple administrative roles in the Neuroscience Graduate Program, Michigan Neuroscience Institute, and Department of Biological Chemistry.

    • Postdoctoral Fellow
      Oregon Health & Science University, Vollum Institute
    • PhD
      University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 1983
    • BS
      Juniata College, Huntingdon, 1978
    Center Memberships
    • Center Member
      Center for Cell Plasticity and Organ Design
    • Center Member
      Eisenberg Family Depression Center
    Research Overview

    The Seasholtz laboratory studies the neural and endocrine control of the stress response. The mammalian stress response is mediated by Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone (CRH, also known as CRF), a 41 amino acid peptide. Hypothalamic CRH controls the release of adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) from the pituitary, which then controls glucocorticoid release from the adrenal gland. At other sites in the brain, CRH acts as a neurotransmitter to control the behavioral, autonomic and immune responses to stress. Dysregulation of the CRH system has been linked to affective disorders, including major depression and anxiety disorders, and to addiction. Our laboratory is interested in understanding the molecular regulation of the CRH system including the two classes of CRH receptors and the CRH-binding protein, particularly in stress, depression and relapse to addiction. We study the mechanisms that regulate the CRH system in health and disease using: 1) transgenic and knockout mouse models for behavioral analyses; 2) in vivo stress and addiction studies; 3) cell culture analysis for biochemical signaling, trafficking and protein-protein interactions; and 4) molecular cloning for studies on the molecular evolution of CRH-binding protein (structure and function).

    Recent Publications See All Publications
    • Journal Article
      Effect of Selective Lesions of Nucleus Accumbens µ-Opioid Receptor-Expressing Cells on Heroin Self-Administration in Male and Female Rats: A Study with Novel Oprm1-Cre Knock-in Rats.
      Bossert JM, Mejias-Aponte CA, Saunders T, Altidor L, Emery M, Fredriksson I, Batista A, Claypool SM, Caldwell KE, Reiner DJ, Chow JJ, Foltz M, Kumar V, Seasholtz A, Hughes E, Filipiak W, Harvey BK, Richie CT, Vautier F, Gomez JL, Michaelides M, Kieffer BL, Watson SJ, Akil H, Shaham Y. J Neurosci, 2023 Mar 8; 43 (10): 1692 - 1713. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2049-22.2023
      PMID: 36717230
    • Preprint
      Effect of selective lesions of nucleus accumbens μ-opioid receptor-expressing cells on heroin self-administration in male and female rats: a study with novel Oprm1-Cre knock-in rats
      Bossert JM, Mejias-Aponte CA, Saunders T, Altidor L, Emery M, Fredriksson I, Batista A, Claypool SM, Caldwell KE, Reiner DJ, Chow JJ, Foltz M, Kumar V, Seasholtz A, Hughes E, Filipiak W, Harvey BK, Richie CT, Vautier F, Gomez JL, Michaelides M, Kieffer BL, Watson SJ, Akil H, Shaham Y. bioRxiv, DOI:10.1101/2022.11.02.514895
    • Journal Article
      Long-term alcohol consumption alters dorsal striatal dopamine release and regulation by D2 dopamine receptors in rhesus macaques.
      Salinas AG, Mateo Y, Carlson VCC, Stinnett GS, Luo G, Seasholtz AF, Grant KA, Lovinger DM. Neuropsychopharmacology, 2021 Jul; 46 (8): 1432 - 1441. DOI:10.1038/s41386-020-00938-8
      PMID: 33452430
    • Journal Article
      Deficits across multiple behavioral domains align with susceptibility to stress in 129S1/SvImJ mice.
      Rodriguez G, Moore SJ, Neff RC, Glass ED, Stevenson TK, Stinnett GS, Seasholtz AF, Murphy GG, Cazares VA. Neurobiol Stress, 2020 Nov; 13: 100262 DOI:10.1016/j.ynstr.2020.100262
      PMID: 33344715
    • Journal Article
      Enhanced CRFR1-Dependent Regulation of a Ventral Tegmental Area to Prelimbic Cortex Projection Establishes Susceptibility to Stress-Induced Cocaine Seeking.
      Vranjkovic O, Van Newenhizen EC, Nordness ME, Blacktop JM, Urbanik LA, Mathy JC, McReynolds JR, Miller AM, Doncheck EM, Kloehn TM, Stinnett GS, Gerndt CH, Ketchesin KD, Baker DA, Seasholtz AF, Mantsch JR. J Neurosci, 2018 Dec 12; 38 (50): 10657 - 10671. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2080-18.2018
      PMID: 30355627
    • Journal Article
      Maternal stress and the MPOA: Activation of CRF receptor 1 impairs maternal behavior and triggers local oxytocin release in lactating rats.
      Klampfl SM, Schramm MM, Gaßner BM, Hübner K, Seasholtz AF, Brunton PJ, Bayerl DS, Bosch OJ. Neuropharmacology, 2018 May 1; 133: 440 - 450. DOI:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2018.02.019
      PMID: 29477300
    • Chapter
      Cloning and distribution of expression of the rat corticotropin-releasing hormone gene
      Thompson RC, Seasholtz AF, Douglass JO, Herbert E. 1990 Corticotropin Releasing Factor: Basic and Clinical Studies of a Neuropeptide,
    • Journal Article
      Cell Type-Specific Expression of Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone-Binding Protein in GABAergic Interneurons in the Prefrontal Cortex.
      Ketchesin KD, Huang NS, Seasholtz AF. Front Neuroanat, 2017 11: 90 DOI:10.3389/fnana.2017.00090
      PMID: 29066956
    Featured News & Stories
    Department News
    Audrey Seasholtz, PhD, retires from active faculty status
    Congratulations and best wishes to Audrey Seasholtz, PhD, Professor Emerita of Biological Chemistry and Research Professor Emerita, Michigan Neuroscience Institute.