Dr. Brandon Henderson (Principal Investigator) - Dr. Henderson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Marshall University's Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine. Brandon received a BS (with distinction) in Chemistry at The Ohio State University. There he started research, initially as an Analytical Chemist in the lab of Dr. John Olesik. He then received his PhD in Pharmacology at The Ohio State University in the lab of Dr. Dennis McKay. He then continued his development as a NIDA-NIH Postdoctoral Fellow at the California Institute of Technology in the lab of Dr. Henry Lester. Before starting his faculty position at Marshall University, Dr. Henderson also trained as a visiting postdoctoral fellow at Yale University under Dr Nii Addy and Dr. Marina Picciotto. In addition to his responsibilities at Marshall University, Dr. Henderson is now one of two co-Chairs for the Basic Science Network in the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (www.SRNT.org).

UTHSCSA PhD grad ceremony, 5-18-2018-JPEGimage.jpg

Dr. Alicia Avelar - Alicia recently received her PhD from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Alicia has a long history in brain-slice electrophysiology and fast-scan cyclic voltammetry. Alicia joins the Henderson lab to bring her experience and also to learn the microscopy and behavioral assays familiar to the Henderson lab. 




Austin Akers - Austin is a recent graduate from Marshall University. During his undergraduate tenure at Marshall University, Austin was an undergraduate researcher in the lab of Dr. Piyali Dasgupta. Austin joins the Henderson lab as a Research Technician and is in charge of managing the mouse colonies. He is also in the process of becoming the jack-of-all trades in the lab: everything from fluorescence microscopy to animal behavioral assays.


Skylar Cooper - Skylar joined the Henderson lab as a graduate research assistant in the summer of 2018. Skylar is focusing on e-cigarette flavors and their role in enhancing addiction to nicotine. This involves self-administration, microscopy, and ultimately electrophysiology. She is also the acting vice-president for the Graduate Student Organization at Marshall University.



Photo Coming Soon

Photo Coming Soon

Arrin Carter Brooks - Arrin is a MD-PhD student and joined the Henderson lab in 2018. On the clinical side, Arrin is receiving training with the ultimate goal of becoming a neurosurgeon. On the research side, Arrin’s background is the study of neural recovery following brain injuries. In her ‘off time’ you can find her running at Ritter Park.

If you see our dad at a conference, tell him to update our photo

If you see our dad at a conference, tell him to update our photo

Aiden and Noah - The Henderson Twins - Aiden and Noah are the unofficial mascots of the lab since they arrived in March of 2018. Their main responsibilities are sleeping, eating, and hugs.....all the things necessary to boost morale.




Zachary Baumgard - Like Austin, Zach is a 2017 graduate of Marshall University. Zach was recruited into the Henderson lab to become a guru of fluorescence microscopy. Outside of labwork, Zach a nationally ranked player of Super Smash Bros. This gives him an edge in calculating pixel intensities of our fluorescent experiments. Since Zach left the Henderson lab, he is now a medical student at Pikeville College of Osteopathic Medicine.


Gabriella Casinelli - Gabriella is a current MD student in the Joan C. Edwards School of medicine, class of 2020. She is an alum of Marshall University's INBRE summer research program. Before starting medical school, Gabriella worked at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh and the University of Pittsburgh doing animal research. For the Summer of 2017, Gabriella is working in the Henderson lab as a summer fellow and is responsible for conducting all of the animal behavior training with Austin. In her free time, she has been educating the lab about 'real' Italian food and rescues stray cats in Huntington.

Awero 'Faye' Osseni - Faye is currently an undergraduate at Marshall University. She is working in the Henderson lab for the summer of 2017 as a SRIMs Research Fellow. Faye is spending the summer learning about mouse brain anatomy, fluorescence laser microscopy, and how both help us understand the neuroadaptations that come with nicotine exposure. Faye is also involved in every club that exists at Marshall University and runs the annual African Fashion show.


Currently, our lab is full but feel free to contact Dr. Henderson about future openings or summer fellowships.

Contact Dr. Brandon Henderson - hendersonbr_at_marshall.edu