Dr. Lane Bekar

Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmacology
College of Medicine
University of Saskatchewan
Tel: 306-966-1201
Fax: 306-966-6220
E-mail: lane.bekar@usask.ca

Academic Credentials

Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Rochester Medical Center
Rochester, NY, United States
Ph.D., Department of Physiology, University of Saskatchewan
M.Sc., Department of Physiology, University of Saskatchewan
B.Sc. (Hons), University of Saskatchewan

Research Interests

  • Neuromodulators, glial cells, and neurodegeneration.

Neurodegenerative diseases are a growing concern in our aging population. Alzheimer disease is the fourth leading cause of death in Canada afflicting more than 300,000 Canadians at a cost of ~12 billion a year to Canadian tax payers. The number of Canadians suffering from Parkinson disease is estimated to be between 80 and 100 thousand. This means that %7e1 in 80 Canadians are afflicted with Alzheimer or Parkinson disease. Neurodegenerative diseases appear to have at their root a common loss of locus coeruleus (LC) neurons. The loss of LC neurons in aging and neurodegenerative disease is likely a key factor given its function in regulating CNS energy utilization, modulating thresholds for synaptic plasticity, providing neurotrophic/anti-inflammatory support and regulating blood flow.

My research focuses on evaluating the physiological/pathological aspects of the LC neuromodulatory network with a specific interest in the role played by glial cells. My projects center on whole animal and slice preparations with extracellular, ion selective, electrochemical and patch-clamp electrophysiological recording techniques combined with multiphoton, intrinsic optical signal (IOS) and voltage-sensitive dye (VSD) imaging techniques. Whole animal work is complemented by studies using live mouse brain slices to further delineate and characterize electrophysiological and pharmacological mechanisms.

Post-Doctoral Position in Pharmacology

The laboratory of Dr. Lane Bekar in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Saskatchewan has a position for a Post-Doctoral Fellow to study the cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration in non-transgenic animal models of neuroinflammation.

Dr. Bekar’s laboratory is interested in the role of stress, inflammation and a high sucrose diet in the development and progression of neurodegenerative phenotypes in non-transgenic mice. The project will involve behavioral, histological, biochemical and electrophysiological techniques in order to assess the impact of the above mentioned stressors on various neuromodulatory systems known to become dysfunctional in neurodegenerative disease.

Job duties:  The Fellow will work on relevant research projects within the scope of laboratory funding.

Terms of employment: Duration of support is dependent upon the availability of funding and ability of the candidate to perform their work. No benefits are offered with this position outside of mandatory benefits as required.  The successful candidate will be expected to apply for fellowship funding.

Location of work: The work will be performed in a shared laboratory space in the Health Sciences building.

Contact information of hiring manager or designate: Dr. Lane Bekar lane.bekar@usask.ca.

Skills requirements The applicant should have an interest in neuroscience, excellent English communication skills and the ability to work independently or in a team environment. Experience in research using mouse behavioral testing, general histological techniques and/or imaging techniques would be a plus.

Start date: Applications will be accepted until the position is successfully filled. Only candidates that are interviewed will be notified.

How to apply: Applicants should submit a current resume and names (with detailed contact information) of three referees via email to lane.bekar@usask.ca.