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Brenton G. Cooper

Associate Professor Direct: 817.257.6462
Ph.D., Psychology University of Utah, 2003
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Research Interests

Our laboratory is an integrative physiology laboratory studying vocal and social communication.  Our goal is to further our understanding of proximate and ultimate mechanisms underlying vocal and social communication.  We study vocal learning and production in birds, rats and, in the future, humans. We investigate this behavior using anatomical, physiological and behavioral measures.  We are particularly interested in physiological mechanisms underlying sound production, and social communication in freely behaving animals. We are currently focusing on a) mechanisms of vocal production and recovery of vocal production following central nervous system damage in Bengalese finches; b) and social communicative functions of USVs in rats.

Recent Publications:

Click here to visit my Google Scholar page for a complete publication list

Daliparthi, V.K., Tachibana, R.O., Cooper, B.G., Hahnloser, R.H.R., Kojima, S., Sober, S.J., & Roberts, T.F. (2019). Transitioning between preparatory and precisely sequenced neuronal activity in production of a skilled behavior. eLife 2019;8:e43732. DOI:

Taylor, J.O., Urbano, C.M., & Cooper, B.G. (2017). Differential patterns of constant frequency 50 and 22 kHz USV production are related to intensity of negative affective state. Behavioral Neuroscience, 131(1), 115-126.

Urbano, C.M., Aston, A.E., & Cooper, B.G. (2016). HVC contributes toward contact call responding in male Bengalese finches. Neuroreport, 27(7), 481-486.

Kranjac, D., Koster, K.M., Kahn, M.S., Eimerbrink, M.J., Womble, B.M., Cooper, B.G., Chumley, M. J. & Boehm, G. W. (2013). Peripheral administration of d-cycloserine rescues fear memory consolidation following bacterial endotoxin exposure. Behavioural Brain Research, 243:38-43.

Urbano, C.M., Peterson, J.R. & Cooper, B.G. (2013). Syllable and sequence restructuring in the Bengalese finch song. Neuroscience Letters, 534:112-116.

Peterson, J.R., Watts, C.R., Morris, J.A., Shelton, J.M. & Cooper, B.G. (2012). Laryngeal aging and the ultrasonic vocalizations in rats. Developmental Psychobiology, 55(8):818-28 DOI: 10.1002/dev.21072

Secora, K. R., Peterson, J. R., Urbano, C. M., Chung, B, Okanoya, K. & Cooper, B. G. (2012). Syringeal specialization of frequency control during song production in the Bengalese finch (Lonchura striata domestica). PLoS ONE 7(3) e34135.doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0034135

Cooper, B.G., Mendez, J.M., Saar, S., Whetstone, A. & Goller, F. (2012). Age-related changes of the Bengalese finch song motor program. Neurobiology of Aging 33(3):564-568.

Teaching and Service Responsibilities

Teaching Responsibilities:  I teach courses specializing in neuroscience and research methodology.  I teach Introductory Neuroscience, Psychopharmacology, Biological Mechanisms of Behavior, Graduate Neuroscience and Behavioral Research.  In addition, I supervise undergraduate students in our Research in Neuroscience course.  In this course, students participate in journal club, and are actively involved in our laboratory research projects.

Service Responsibilities:  My primary service responsibility is to work as part of our university Animal Care and Use Committee.  In addition, I serve on a rotational basis as the coordinator of our animal facilities.