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Lab personnel

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Research interests

Our research group principally uses electrophysiology and immunohistochemistry to determine how the brain controls birth, lactation, and cardiovascular function. Our main focus is on how oxytocin and vasopressin contribute to preterm labour, high blood pressure and heart problems..


Oxytocin, vasopressin, hypothalamus, dehydration, hypertension.

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  • Hypothalamic regulation of reproductive and cardiovascular function

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Current funding

  • 2014–2019: Health Research Council of New Zealand: Healthy pregnancies, healthy babies

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Previous funding

  • 2013–2016: Health Research Council of New Zealand: Central regulation of natural birth process
  • 2010–2014: Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Fund: Hormonal regulation of bodyweight in reproduction
  • 2010–2013: Health Research Council of New Zealand: Kisspeptin-oxytocin regulation of pregnancy: implications for preterm delivery
  • 2008: New Zealand Lottery Grants Board: Neural-hormonal communication in the brain
  • 2006–2008: New Zealand Lottery Grants Board: Mechanisms of plasticity in vasopressin cell activity during dehydration
  • 2003–2006: Wellcome Trust: Cellular mechanisms underlying neuronal excitability during morphine withdrawal
  • 2000–2003: Wellcome Trust Fellowship: Investigation of dendritic regulation of activity by endogenous kappa-opioid peptides in the neurohypophysial system

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  • Charles Bourque, McGill University, Canada
  • David Grattan, University of Otago, New Zealand
  • Gareth Leng, University of Edinburgh, UK
  • Mike Ludwig, University of Edinburgh, UK
  • Javier Stern, Medical College of Georgia, USA

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  • HUBS 191
  • PHSL 231
  • PHSL 251
  • PHSL 342
  • PHSL 472
  • PHSL 474

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Selected publications

Li, T., Jia, S.-W., Hou, D., Liu, X., Li, D., Liu, Y., … Brown, C. H., & Wang, Y.-F. (2021). Intranasal oxytocin restoration of maternal behavior and oxytocin neuronal activity in the supraoptic nucleus in rat dams with pre-labor cesarean delivery. Neuroscience. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2021.06.020

Nair, B. B., Khant Aung, Z., Porteous, R., Prescott, M., Glendining, K. A., Jenkins, D. E., Augustine, R. A., … Yip, S. H., Bouwer, G. T., Brown, C. H., Jasoni, C. L., Campbell, R. E., Bunn, S. J., Anderson, G. M., Grattan, D. R., Herbison, A. E., & Iremonger, K. J. (2021). Impact of chronic variable stress on neuroendocrine hypothalamus and pituitary in male and female C57BL/6J mice. Journal of Neuroendocrinology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/jne.12972

Sethi, S., Augustine, R. A., Bouwer, G. T., Schwenke, D. O., Brown, C. H., & Lamberts, R. R. (2020). Type 2 diabetes is associated with increased activation of brain regions that regulate sympathetic drive to the heart. New Zealand Medical Journal, 133(1527), (pp. 126). Retrieved from

Brown, C. H., Roy, R. K., Hamm, J. P., & Stern, J. E. (2020). Development of a novel approach for real-time two-photon imaging of the rat hypothalamus in vivo. FASEB Journal, 34(Suppl. 1). doi: 10.1096/fasebj.2020.34.s1.04797

Perkinson, M. R., Kim, J. S., Brown, C. H., & Iremonger, K. J. (2020). Characterisation of an oxytocin-ires-cre mouse model for recording oxytocin neuron bursts in behaving mice. FASEB Journal, 34(Suppl. 1). doi: 10.1096/fasebj.2020.34.s1.03560

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