I am a basic researcher in behavioral neuroscience and neuroendocrinology with a focus on the neurobiology, neurochemistry, and molecular biology of sexual behavior. My research examines how the brain’s neurochemical and neuroanatomical systems are organized for sexual arousal, desire, pleasure, and inhibition. I am also interested in the role played by stimuli associated with sexual reward in priming sexual responses and the brain mechanisms they activate to do so.
Research from my laboratory has revealed a strong epigenetic effect of experience with sexual pleasure on the crystallization of sexual attraction, desire, preference, and performance. My lab has also played a major role in the preclinical development of drugs to treat sexual arousal, desire, and orgasm disorders. My work in humans is concerned with objective and subjective aspects of sexual arousal, desire, and orgasm, assessment of sexual incentives, paraphilias, and the effects of stress.