Brian Trieu

Entering Class - 2017

Member of MSTP (MD/PhD) program

E-MAIL: trieu016@umn.edu

Undergraduate Institution and Major:

University of California, B.S. in Developmental and Cell Biology, 2011

Graduate Advisor:

Patrick Rothwell, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience

Graduate Research:

Several neuropsychiatric diseases implicate an imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory activity within the striatum, including autism spectrum disorder and addiction. My research seeks to 1) understand how the endogenous opioid system can selectively modulate synaptic transmission and plasticity and 2) how specific opioid-dependent mechanisms of plasticity can restore excitation-inhibition balance in animal models for neuropsychiatric disease. Elucidating specific mechanisms of opioid-dependent plasticity will contribute to the development of novel therapeutics that take advantage of unique synapse-specific elements and allow for a transdiagnostic approach toward treatment of neuropsychiatric diseases.

Graduate Abstracts:

Oral Presentations:

  • Trieu BH. From bench to bedside and back again. (Invited Speaker) Inspire Conference, Institute for Engineering in Medicine; 2018 Nov 16; Minneapolis, MN.

Graduate Awards/Honors:

  • MnDRIVE Neuromodulation Fellowship, 2018 - 2019

Professional Outreach:

  • Minnesota State Brain Bee judge, MnDRIVE, Graduate Program in Neuroscience, Feb. 2019
  • Pursuing the Highest Degree workshop, Northstar STEM Alliance, Nov. 2018
  • Brain Awareness Week, Graduate Program in Neuroscienc,e Oct. 2018
  • Undergraduate Physician-Scientist Mentoring Program, UMN MSTP, 2017 – present
  • American Medical Student Association mentoring program, 2016 – present
  • Student National Medical Association mentorship program, 2015 – present

Professional Membership(s):

  • Society for Neuroscience 2012-present

Undergraduate Awards:

  • Excellence in Undergraduate Research, 2011
  • Dean’s Honor List, 2007-2011

Undergraduate or Post-Bac Research:

I worked with Drs. Gary Lynch and Christine Gall at UC Irvine studying hippocampal synaptic plasticity in rodents. Through a combination of electrophysiology, imaging methods, and behavioral tasks, we sought to understand and bridge the molecular mechanisms underlying long-term potentiation and behaviors associated with learning and memory.

What Got You Interested In Research?

I got hooked when I realized that there was little difference between science fiction and reality. Within a research question, I could push the boundaries of knowledge as far as my imagination will go. It’s exciting to be in a field where crazy ideas, creativity, and unique perspectives are the norm.
 

Why Did You Choose MN?

Minnesota offers a unique and extraordinarily cohesive climate that will facilitate my growth as a person. The Graduate Program in Neuroscience and Medical Sciences Training Program’s collaborative and rigorous training coupled with their extensive resources is an excellent environment to do creative research and foster success as a future physician-scientist.

Student Mentor and the Best Advice They Gave:

Brian Sweis: Learn for the sake of learning because neuroscience is fun and exciting stuff. Utilize classes to hone critical thinking and interpretation skills as a creative and rigorous scientist. 

Favorite Itasca Memory:

On our last weekend, we invaded the small local bar for karaoke night. It was a night full of shenanigans, tear-inducing laughter, and moments we will never forget.

 

Picture of Brian Trieu