Ilene Bernstein

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Ilene Bernstein, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus
Advising: Does not accept or train psychology graduate students.
Interests: Behavioral Neuroscience, Mechanisms Affecting Learning, Motivation & Taste Preference


Our research is in the general area of neural basis of conditioning, motivation and appetite with particular emphasis on taste aversion learning, neurobiology of taste preference, dopamine systems and motivation. Neuroscience techniques currently in use in the laboratory include immunohistochemistry, especially for cFos protein; electrolytic and excitotoxic brain lesions; nerve transections; inbred strains of rats and mice; testing of transgenic (knockout) mice. Behavioral testing includes taste aversion conditioning, assessment of the rewarding effects of drugs using conditioned place preference and assessment of the stimulant effects of drugs using automated activity monitors.


University of California - Los Angeles (1972)

  • Clark, J.J. & Bernstein, I.L. Sensitization of salt appetite is associated with increased "wanting" but not "liking" of a salt reward in the sodium-deplete rat. Behavioral Neuroscience, 120: 206-10.
  • Clark, J.J. & Bernstein, I.L. [2006] A role for D2 but not D1 dopamine receptors in the cross-sensitization between amphetamine and salt appetite.Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior, 83:277-84.
  • Koh, M.T. & Bernstein, I.L. [2005] Mapping conditioned taste aversion associations using c-fos reveals a dynamic role for insular cortex. Behavioral Neuroscience. 119: 388-98
  • Koh, M.T., Wilkins, E.E. & Bernstein, I.L. [2003] Novel taste elevates c-fos expression in the central amygdale and insular cortex: Implication for taste aversion learning. Behavioral Neuroscience, 117: 1416-1422.
  • Roitman, M.F., Na, E., Anderson, G., Jones, T.A. & Bernstein, I.L. [2002] Induction of a salt appetite alters dendritic morphology in nucleus accumbens and sensitizes rats to amphetamine. Journal of Neuroscience, 22:RC225 (1-5).