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Anjali M. Rajadhyaksha,


Director, Center for Substance Abuse Research

PhD Faculty Member 

Anjali  Rajadhyaksha
Contact Information

Contact Information



About Me

Research Interests

  • My laboratory's research is focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms of substance use and mood-related disorders. One area of research involves the study of how calcium signaling mechanisms in the brain, activated by voltage-gated L-type calcium channels, Cav1.2 and Cav1.3, contribute to cocaine- and mood-related behaviors. This is of particular importance and high significance given the recently identified link in patients between the Cav1.2 and Cav1.3 genes, CACNA1C and CACNA1D, and neuropsychiatric and substance use disorders. The goal is to better understand how genetics can influence addiction- and neuropsychiatric-related conditions.
  • A second area of research involves the study of the interaction between the endocannabinoid and opioid signaling pathways in the actions of opioids. Here we aim to test whether targeting the endocannabinoid system can dampen the rewarding effect of opioids without altering its analgesic properties. For both these studies we are utilizing animal models in combination with genetic, viral, molecular, in vivo calcium imaging and behavioral techniques within defined brain circuits. Our hope is that a better understanding of the brain at the genetic and molecular level will aid in developing therapeutic strategies for treating drug dependence and co-occurring mood-related conditions.
Education, Training & Credentials

Educational Background

  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Molecular Neuroscience, Harvard Medical School
  • PhD, Molecular Biology
  • Purdue University\n- BSc, Chemistry, University of Mumbai


  • Society for Neuroscience
  • The Calcium Channel Network

Honors & Awards

  • Outstanding Performance as Undergraduate Mentor-The Leadership Alliance
  • Weill Cornell Graduate School Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring Award