Institute of Neuroscience

Staff Profile

Dr Fiona LeBeau



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Roles and Responsibilities

 I am Postgraduate Research Coordinator and Postdoctoral Tutor for the Institute of Neuroscience.



BSc Physiology (1st class) Sheffield University

PhD Neuroscience (Newcastle University)


Previous Positions

Post-doctoral Fellow, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD.

Non-Clinical Scientist MRC Anatomical Neuropharmacology Unit, Oxford, UK.

Senior Post-doctoral Research Fellow, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Leeds, UK.



British Neuroscience Association

The Physiological Society

Society for Neuroscience



Research Interests

My main interests are in understanding the mechanisms involved in the generation of cortical network activity.  In particularly we are keen to understand the role of different types of network oscillations e.g. theta (4-12 Hz) and gamma (30-80 Hz) frequency oscillations in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. These oscillations are important for many higher cognitive functions including learning, memory and attention. I am also interested in understanding how these oscillations are modulated by the brain's different neuromodulator systems including dopamine and noradrenaline.

Other Expertise

In my lab we use a combination of in vitro electrophysiological and in vivo approaches in rodents to study cortical network oscillations and their modulation by monoamine neurotransmitter systems.  We are also involved in a large multi-group project using EEG recordings and optogenetics to record and manipulate the abnormal cortical activity occurring in epilepsy. I have close collaborations with many other researchers within the Institute of Neuroscience and long standing collaborations with Prof Nancy Kopell (Boston Uni) and Prof. Ed Boyden (MIT) and with Professor Miles Whittington (York Uni).

Current Work

We are currently working on a number of projects elucidating the role of network oscillations in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. Changes in these key brain areas are implicated in many diseases such as schizophrenia, Alzheimer's disease, and dementia with Lewy bodies. We are currently investigating changes in the monoamine systems and network oscillations in a variety of animal models of these diseases.

Current lab members

Clare Tweedy, Jennifer Scott, Anupam Hazra.

Past Lab members

Joanne Driver, Daniel C Haggerty, Bernadette O'Donovan, Dorcas C Eden, Claire Gillougley, Natalie Adams, Vasilis Glykos, Sabine Gretenkord.

Past Funding

Royal Society Research Grant; Newcastle University Studentship; Lena Teague Bequest Fund; BBSRC equipment grant; EPSRC studentship; BBSRC/CASE studentship; Wellcome Trust studentship.

Present Funding

MRC Case studentship, Alzheimer's Society studentship.. UK Innovate Grant.


I am Module Leader for the Biomedical Sciences undergraduate module The Nervous System (BMS2011).

I teach on the Pharmacology BSc course and the Mres in Neuroscience.

I regularly supervise undergraduate and postgraduate laboratory projects.