Sam Cooke, Ph.D.
research interests are learning and memory. These processes are
critical for well-being and survival, enabling the detection of
novelty, the attainment of reward, the avoidance of punishment, the
acquisition of skill and providing our cherished autobiography.
Disturbances resulting from ageing or disease drastically impact
quality of life, making learning and memory important processes to
understand. Three major questions interest me: First, how is the
nervous system modified to store memory for a long time? Second, how is
stored memory retrieved only in the appropriate setting? Third, how are
these processes disrupted in disease? To address these questions I work
on the understudied phenomenon of behavioral habituation. This process
is highly conserved across species, reflecting its fundamental role in
cognition. Habituation to stimuli that do not signal reward or
punishment enables attention to be assigned to novel stimuli that bear
potential significance. It is essential in the mouse, the laboratory
animal that is studied with the widest array of experimental tools, as
well as in humans, where deficits characterize developmental
psychiatric disorders. We have developed novel assays of habituation in
mice that facilitate a wide range of experimental techniques, and have
shown that underlying plasticity occurs in primary visual cortex (V1).
1993-1996 – Bachelor of Arts, Philosophy and Psychology. The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom.
1997-1998 – Research Masters, Neurological Science. Department of
Anatomy and Developmental Biology, University College London (UCL), UK.
1998-2002 – PhD, Behavioural Neuroscience. Department of Anatomy
and Developmental Biology, University College London (UCL), UK.
Cooke SF, Komorowski RW, Kaplan ES, Gavornik JP, Bear MF (2015) Visual recognition memory, manifested as long-term habituation, requires
synaptic plasticity in V1. Nature Neuroscience. 18(2):262-271.
Plattner F, Hernandez A, Kistler TM, Pozo K, Zhong P, Yuen, EY, Tan C, Hawasli AH, Cooke SF,
Nishi A, Guo A, Wiederhold T, Yan Z, Bibb JA (2014) Memory Enhancement
by Targeting Cdk5 Regulation of NR2B. Neuron. 81(5):1079-1083.
Cooke SF and
Bear MF (2013) How the mechanisms of long-term synaptic potentiation
and depression serve experience-dependent plasticity in primary visual
cortex. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society (London) B
Biological Sciences. 369(1633):20130284.
and Bear MF (2012) Stimulus-selective response plasticity in the visual
cortex: An assay for the assessment of pathophysiology and treatment of
cognitive impairment associated with psychiatric disorders. Biologicial
Bliss TVP and Cooke SF (2011) What are the clinical applications of long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD)? Clinics. 66 Suppl. 1:3-17.
and Bear MF (2010) Visual experience induces long-term potentiation in
the primary visual cortex. Journal of Neuroscience. 30(48):16304-13.
Morice E, Andreae LC, Cooke SF,
Vanes L, Fisher EM, Tybulewicz VL, Bliss TV (2008) Preservation of
long-term memory and synaptic plasticity despite short-term impairments
in the Tc1 mouse model of Down syndrome. Learning and Memory.
Neves G, Cooke SF,
Bliss TV (2008) Synaptic plasticity, memory and the hippocampus: a
neural network approach to causality. Nature Reviews Neuroscience.
Hooper C, Markevich V, Plattner F, Killick R, Schofield E, Engel T, Hernandez F, Anderton B, Rosenblum K, Bliss T, Cooke SF,
Avila J, Lucas JJ, Giese KP, Stephenson J, Lovestone S (2007) Glycogen
synthase kinase-3 inhibition is integral to long-term potentiation.
European Journal of Neuroscience. 25(1): 81-86.
Ohana O, Dammermann B, Errington ML, Gross C, Mao X, Engelsberg A,
Mahlke C, Welzl H, Kobalz U, Fernandez E, Husi H, Waltereit R,
Bick-Sander A, Therstappen E, Cooke SF,
Blanquet V, Wurst W, Salmen B, Bösl MR, Lipp HP, Schmitz D, Grant SGN,
Bliss TVP, Wolfer DP, Kuhl D (2006) Arc/Arg3.1 is essential for the
consolidation of synaptic plasticity and memories. Neuron. 52(3):437-44.
Wu J*, Plattner F*, Errington M, Rowan M, Peters M, Hirano A, Bradshaw
KD, Anwyl R, Bliss TVP and Giese KP (2006) Autophosphorylation of
_lphaCaMKII is not a general effector mechanism for NMDA-dependent
long-term potentiation in the adult mouse. Journal of Physiology.
574.3: 805-18. *equal contributors.
Cooke SF and Bliss TVP (2006) Plasticity in the human nervous system. Brain. 129 (7): 1659-73.
O'Doherty A, Ruf S, Mulligan C, Hildreth V, Errington ML, Cooke S,
Sesay A, Modino S, Vanes L, Hernandez D, Linehan JM, Sharpe PT,
Brandner S, Bliss TV, Henderson DJ, Nizetic D, Tybulewicz VL, Fisher EM
(2005) An aneuploid mouse strain carrying human chromosome 21 with Down
syndrome phenotypes. Science. 309 (5743): 2033-7.
Fragkouli F, Hearn C, Errington M, Cooke S,
Grigoriou M, Bliss T, Stylianopoulou F and Pachnis V (2005) Loss of
forebrain cholinergic neurons and impairment in spatial learning and
memory in LHX7-deficient mice. European Journal of Neuroscience.
Cooke SF and Bliss TVP (2005) Long-term potentiation and cognitive drug discovery. Current opinion in drug discovery. 6(1): 25-34.
Attwell PJ and Yeo CH (2004) Temporal properties of
cerebellar-dependent memory consolidation. Journal of Neuroscience. 24:
Cooke SF and Bliss TVP (2003) The genetic enhancement of memory. Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences. 60: 1-5.
Attwell PJ, Cooke SF and Yeo CH (2002) Cerebellar function in consolidation of a motor memory Neuron. 34: 1011-20.
Guo S, Wilson SW, Cooke S,
Chitnis AB, Driever W and Rosenthal A (1999) Mutations in the zebrafish
unmask shared regulatory pathways controlling the development of
catecholaminergic neurons. Developmental biology. 208: 473-87.