Paul Meyer


Paul Meyer.

Paul Meyer


Paul Meyer


Associate Professor
Behavioral Neuroscience Area Head

Research Interests

Behavioral and neurophysiological responses to food- and drug-associated stimuli

Contact Information

B71 Park Hall

Buffalo NY, 14260-4110

Phone: (716) 645-0263


  • PhD, Oregon Health & Science University

Current Research

The overall research goal of my laboratory is to determine the precise role of the brain’s reward circuitry in appetitive learning and drug addiction, and how motivated behavior is controlled by reward‐associated stimuli (“cues”). To this end, my laboratory specializes in behavioral and in vivo neurophysiological techniques to study neural connections within reward‐related brain areas. Further, I am interested in how individual differences in the ability of cues to control motivated behavior are reflected by neural activity within this circuitry (specifically the ventral basal ganglia), and how genetic and environmental factors interact to influence the magnitude of these differences.

Selected Publications

  • Chitre AS, Polesskaya O, Holl K, Gao J, Cheng R, Martinez A, George T, Gileta AF, Han W, Horvath A, Hughson A, Ishiwari K, King CP, Lamparelli A, Versaggi CL, Martin C, St. Pierre CL, Tripi JA, Wang T, Wladecki H, Chen H, Flagel SB, Meyer PJ, Richards J, Robinson TE, Palmer AA, Solberg Woods LC (2020) Genome wide association study of body weight, body mass index, adiposity, and fasting glucose in 3,173 outbred rats. Obesity. In press.
  • King CP, Tripi JA, Hughson AR, Horvath AP, Lamparelli AC, Holl KL, Chitre AS, Polesskaya O, Richards JB, Solberg Woods LC, Palmer AA, Robinson TE, Flagel SB, Meyer PJ (2020) Sensitivity to food and cocaine cues are independent traits in a large sample of heterogeneous stock rats. bioRxiv 2020.2005.2013.066944.
  • Wakabayashi KT, Feja M, Leigh MPK, Baindur AN, Suarez M, Meyer PJ, Bass CE (2020) Chemogenetic activation of mesoaccumbal Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid projections selectively tunes responses to predictive cues when reward value is unexpectedly decreased. bioRxiv 2020.2003.2004.977371.
  • Peterson VL, Richards JB, Meyer PJ, Cabrera-Rubio R, Tripi JA, King CP, Polesskaya O, Baud A, Chitre A, Bastiaanssen TFS, Solberg Woods L, Crispie F, Dinan TG, Cotter PD, Palmer AA, Cryan JF (2020). Sex-dependent Associations between Addiction-related Behaviors and the Microbiome. EBioMedicine 55: 102769.
  • Loney GC, Angelyn H, Meyer PJ (2019) Nicotine produces a high-approach, low-avoidance phenotype in response to alcohol-associated cues in male rats. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 43: 1284-1295.
  • Loney GC, Meyer PJ (2019) Nicotine reduces the sensitivity to the interoceptive properties of commonly abused drugs as assessed with taste conditioning paradigms. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 194: 341-350.
  • Loney GC, Pautassi RM, Kapadia D, Meyer PJ (2018) Nicotine affects ethanol-conditioned taste, but not place, aversion in a simultaneous conditioning procedure, Alcohol 71: 47-55.
  • Loney GC, Meyer PJ. (2018) Brief Exposures to the Taste of Ethanol (EtOH) and Quinine Promote Subsequent Acceptance of EtOH in a Paradigm that Minimizes Postingestive Consequences. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 42(3): 589-602.
  • Pasquariello KP, Han M, Unal C, Meyer PJ (2017) Adrenergic manipulation inhibits Pavlovian conditioned approach behaviors. Behavioral Brain Research 339: 278-285.
  • King CP, Militello L, Hart A, St Pierre CL, Leung E, Catlin J, Roberson NP, Versaggi CL, Palmer AA, Richards JB, Meyer PJ (2017) Cdh13 and AdipoQ gene knockout alters instrumental and Pavlovian drug conditioning. Genes, Brain, & Behavior. 16 (7): 686-698.
  • Tripi JA, Dent MD, Meyer PJ (2016) Individual differences in food-cue responsivity are assoicated with cocaine-induced ultrasonic vocalizations. Psychopharmacology.  234 (3): 437-446.
  • Ahrens AM, Meyer PJ, Ferguson LM, Robinson TE, Aldridge JW (2016). Neural Activity in the Ventral Pallidum Encodes Variation in the Incentive Value of a Reward Cue. The Journal of Neuroscience. 36 (30): 7957-7970.
  • Versaggi CL, King CP, Meyer PJ (2016) The tendency to sign-track predicts cue-induced reinstatement during nicotine self-administration, and is enhanced by nicotine but not ethanol. Psychopharmacology. 233 (15-16): 2985-2997.
  • King CP, Palmer AA, Solberg Woods LC, Richards JB, Meyer PJ (2016) Premature responding is associated with approach to a food cue in male and female heterogeneous stock rats.Psychopharmacology. 233 (13): 2593-2605.
  • Meyer PJ, King CP, & Ferarrio C (2015) “Motivational processes involved in substance abuse disorder” Current Topics in Behavioral Neuroscience. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp. 1-34.