Education and Training
- Associate Project Scientist/Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning & Memory, University of California Irvine, Irvine, CA
- Ph.D.M.Phil.M.S., Behavioral Neuroscience, Yale University, New Haven, CT
- B.A., Psychology, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach
Dr. Allen is the Director of the Neurocircuitry & Cognition Lab in the Cognitive Neuroscience Program and Department of Psychology at Florida International University. The lab focuses on neurobiological mechanisms of cognition and mental health disorders, placing an emphasis on the role of long-range connections between the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. The lab conducts research with animal models of human cognition which allows the use of biological tools not otherwise available in exclusively human experiments. The overarching goal of the lab is to understand how circuits in the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex interact through long range projections enabling learning, memory, and behavior. The experimental strategy is to record neural activity in freely-behaving animals while simultaneously using cutting-edge genetic and pharmacological approaches to manipulate neural activity in specific circuit pathways. Additionally, functional neuroimaging and tractography is used in human clinical populations via our close collaborations with colleagues in the Cognitive Neuroscience Program and the Department of Psychology. These cross-species collaborations help translate the neurobiological findings found in the animal experiments to human populations. Connections between the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex are known to be abnormal in several mental health disorders (e.g., Alzheimer's disease and ADHD).
Major Research Questions:
- How do memory systems in the medial temporal lobe interact with executive systems in the prefrontal cortex to guide adaptive behavior?
- What are the roles of specific projection pathways connecting the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex?
- What neural representations and computations go awry in memory-related cognitive disorders?
Allen, T.A., Morris, A., & Fortin, N.J., & Stark, C.E.L. (2015). Memory for sequences of events impaired in typical aging. Learning & Memory, 22, 138-148.
Allen, T.A., Morris, A.M., Mattfeld, A.T., Stark, C.E.L., & Fortin, N.J. (2014). A sequence of events model of episodic memory shows parallels in rats and humans. Hippocampus 24(10): 1178-1188.
Jacobs, N.S., Allen, T.A., Nguyen, N., & Fortin, N.J. (2013). Critical role of the hippocampus in memory for elapsed time. The Journal of Neuroscience, 33(34), 13888-13893. Featured in Scientific American article titled “Your brain has two clocks” http:/www.scientificamerican.comarticle.cfm?id=your-brain-has-two-clocks
Allen, T.A. & Fortin, N.J. (2013). The evolution of episodic memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 110 (Suppl 2), 10379-10386.
Allen, T.A. & Fortin, N.J. (2013). Reply to Rattenborg and Martinez-Gonzalez: Fundamental and divergent aspects of the neurobiology of episodic memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 110(40), E3742.
Feinberg, L.M., Allen, T.A., Ly, D. & Fortin, N.J. (2012). Recognition memory for social and non-social odors: Differential effects of neurotoxic lesions to the hippocampus and perirhinal cortex. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 97(1), 7 -16.
Law, L.M., Gardner, R.D., Allen, T.A. & Lee, D.W. (2010). Species-specific injury-induced cell proliferation in the hippocampus and subventricular zone of food-storing and non-storing wild birds. Developmental Neurobiology, 70(1).
Allen, T.A., Narayanan, N.S., Kholodar-Smith, D.B., Zhao, Y., Laubach, M. & Brown, T.H. (2008). Imaging the spread of reversible brain inactivations using fluorescent muscimol. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 171(1), 30 – 38.
Kholodar-Smith, D.B. Allen, T.A. & Brown, T.H. (2008). Fear conditioning to discontinuous auditory cues requires perirhinal cortical function. Behavioral Neuroscience, 122(5), 1178-1185.
Bang, S.J., Allen, T.A., Jones, L.K., Boguszewski, P. & Brown, T.H. (2008). Asymmetrical stimulus generalization following differential fear conditioning. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 90(1), 200 – 216. http:dx.doi.org10.1016j.nlm.2008.02.009
Furtak, S.C., Allen, T.A. & Brown, T.H. (2007). Single-unit firing in rat perirhinal cortex caused by fear conditioning to arbitrary and ethological stimuli. The Journal of Neuroscience, 27(45), 12277-12291.
Allen, T.A., Furtak, S.C. & Brown, T.H. (2007). Single-unit responses to 22 kHz ultrasonic vocalizations in rat perirhinal cortex. Behavioral Brain Research, 182, 327 – 336.
Peterson, R.S., Fernando, G., Day, L., Allen, T.A., Chapleau, J.D., Menjivar, J., Schlinger, B.A. & Lee, D.W. (2007). Aromatase expression and cell proliferation following injury of the adult zebra finch hippocampus. Developmental Neurobiology, 67(14), 1867 – 1878.
Lee, D.W., Fernando, G., Peterson, R.S., Allen, T.A. & Schlinger, B.A. (2007). Estrogen mediation of injury-induced cell birth in neuroproliferative regions of the adult zebra finch brain. Developmental Neurobiology, 67(8), 1107 – 1117. Courses Taught Sensation & Perception