Jeff Kuerbitz.Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Undergraduate Institution: University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio

My research focuses on the genetic influences on the development of a population of cells in the amygdala, which regulates fear responses. It is our hope that this project will uncover clues to mechanisms behind anxiety disorders.

I majored in biochemistry and philosophy at the University of Dayton. After college I was attracted to medical research because of its emphasis on critical thinking, the constant advancement of the field, and the hope that I could see my work contribute to developing novel disease treatments. I enrolled in the University of Cincinnati Medical Scientist Training Program.

When I began looking for a lab, I was drawn to Cincinnati Children’s by its unique combination of elite clinical programs and cutting edge research. I completed four rotations in the Developmental Biology program here and was impressed by how accessible the faculty here is. I have committed to a lab, but still regularly talk to some of the P.I.s in whose labs I rotated. I also enjoyed the diversity of the research here. Developmental biology encompasses so many organ systems and disease processes, that students have the opportunity to experience a very broad spectrum of research before narrowing down their interests. Finally, the students here were extremely friendly and welcoming.

I am constantly being challenged. I feel that I have improved my skills as a researcher. I recommend the program.