I graduated in Experimental Psychology in Rome, Italy, and in Biology in Pisa, Italy. I received my PhD in Neuroscience at the Medical School of the University of Pisa. From 1991 to 1998, I joined the group of Prof Beat Gahwiler and Dr Scott M. Thompson at the Brain Research Institute of the University of Zurich, Switzerland. Subsequently, I moved to the UK as a senior scientist of the Neurophysiology Laboratory at the Novartis Institute for Medical Sciences, University College London, UK. My research training also includes a stay at the Department of Clinical Neuropharmacology of the Max Planck Institute for Psychiatry, Munich, Germany. In January 2001, I joined the MRC ANU, Oxford, as a group leader.
My past experimental work suggested novel mechanisms of the modulation of transmitter release, such as a direct interference with presynaptic exocytotic proteins, induced by the activation of presynaptic receptors or neurotoxins. Currently, I am interested in understanding cortical and sub-cortical circuits that guide emotional-dependent behaviours, and that are targeted by key cognitive drugs. To achieve this goal, I study the physiological role of identified neuron types in the human cortex, and in the hippocampus and amygdala of rodents, with an emphasis on GABAergic neurons. I use a wide range of techniques including electrophysiology in vitro and in vivo, voltage-sensitive dye imaging, and high-resolution anatomy. My research activities benefit from the contributions of a broad range of collaborators who are leaders in their fields.
Key Research Areas
- Physiological and pharmacological properties of synaptic transmission between identified neurons.
- Amygdala-hippocampus-prefrontal cortex neuronal networks.
- Pharmacology of GABAergic synapses.
Hippocampal Theta Input to the Amygdala Shapes Feedforward Inhibition to Gate Heterosynaptic Plasticity.
Bazelot M. et al, (2015), Neuron, 87, 1290 - 1303
Large intercalated neurons of amygdala relay noxious sensory information.
Bienvenu TCM. et al, (2015), J Neurosci, 35, 2044 - 2057
Oscillatory substrates of fear and safety.
Bocchio M. and Capogna M., (2014), Neuron, 83, 753 - 755
GABAergic cell type diversity in the basolateral amygdala.
Capogna M., (2014), Curr Opin Neurobiol, 26, 110 - 116
Which molecules regulate synaptic brain asymmetries?
Capogna M., (2013), J Physiol, 591, 4687 - 4688