MQ Health - Macquarie University

The neurophysiology of the nervous system and drug receptors

Some neurosciences research within MQ Health explores the fundamental neurophysiological processes that occur within the central nervous system, particularly the autonomic nervous system, which controls automatic bodily functions such as breathing, swallowing, heartbeat and blood pressure.

While this research seeks to understand the intricacy and complexity of the nervous system, the insights from it are offering new directions for managing health conditions such as high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, chronic kidney disease, and mental health disorders including depression, schizophrenia and drug addiction.

Meanwhile, research at the junction of neurophysiology and pharmacology is exploring how opioid and cannabinoid receptors in cells respond to different illicit and prescription drugs. These fundamental insights can guide new types of drug therapies for conditions such as epilepsy and chronic pain.