Biology: Dr. Huber
Dr. Robert Huber


Dr. Robert Huber

Ph. D., Texas Tech University
Office:     227B Life Sciences Building
Phone:   1-419-372-7492
Neurochemistry of aggression
Research and Personal Home Page

Research Interests:

My laboratory investigates the behavioral significance of amines in complex behavioral phenomena such aggression and drug addiction. Using simpler systems approaches we mostly study these behaviors in invertebrates with a combination of neuroethological, pharmacological, and molecular approaches. Towards this goal I am interested in the neurochemical mechanisms underlying motivational states in behavior. Questions such as "why does an animal perform behavior A as opposed to behavior B at a specific point in time?" motivate my research program. The highly structured behavior of crayfish, which have relatively 'simple' nervous systems, allows us to explore the neural basis of motivational mechanisms at levels which are difficult to achieve in most other species, including mammals. We offer expertise in quantitative, behavioral analysis, automated behavioral screening, dynamic and self-structuring properties, neural designs and neurochemical measures.

Selected Publications:

Nathaniel T, Panksepp J & R Huber. 2011/12. Alteration of c-Fos mRNA in the accessory lobe of crayfish is associated with a conditioned-cocaine induced reward. Neurosci Res. (in press)

Nathaniel T, Huber R & J Panksepp. 2011/12. Repeated cocaine treatments induce distinct locomotor effects in Crayfish. Brain Research Bull. 87:328-333

Alcaro, A, Panksepp J & R Huber. 2011. D-amphetamine stimulates unconditioned exploration/approach behaviors in crayfish: towards a conserved evolutionary explanation of ancestral drug reward. Psychopharm. 99(1): 75-80

Daws AG, Hock K & R Huber. 2011. Spatial structure of hierarchical groups: testing for processes of aggregation, clustering, and spatial centrality in crayfish (Orconectes rusticus). Mar. Freshwater Behav. Physiol. 44(4): 209-222

Nathaniel TI, Panksepp J & R Huber. 2010. Effects of a single and repeated morphine treatment on conditioned and unconditioned behavioral sensitization in crayfish. Behavioural Brain Research 207(2): 310-320

Huber R, Panksepp JB, Nathaniel T, Alcaro A & J Panksepp. 2011. Drug-sensitive reward in crayfish: An invertebrate model system for the study of SEEKING, reward, addiction, and withdrawal. Neurosci. & Biobehav. Rev. 35(9): 1847-1853

Hock K & R Huber. 2006. Modeling the acquisition of social rank in crayfish: winner and loser effects and self-structuring properties. Behaviour 143: 325-346 - full text

Huber R. 2005. Amines and motivated behaviours: A simpler systems approach to complex behavioural phenomena. J. comp. Physiol. A 191: 231-239 - full text

Nilsen SP, Chan Y-B, Huber R & EA Kravitz. 2004. Gender-selective patterns of aggressive behavior in Drosophila melanogaster. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 101 (33): 12342-12347 - full text

Panksepp JB & R Huber. 2004. Ethological analyses of crayfish behavior: A new invertebrate system for measuring the rewarding properties of psychostimulants. Behavioural Brain Research 153: 171-180 - full text

Kravitz EA & R Huber. 2003. Aggression in invertebrates. Current Opinion in Neurobiology 13(6): 736-743 - full text

Panksepp JB, Yue Z, Drerup C & R Huber. 2003. Amine neurochemistry and aggression in crayfish. Microscopy Research & Technique 60: 360-368 - full text

Chen S, Lee AY, Bowens NM, Huber R & EA Kravitz. 2002. Fighting fruit flies: a model system for the study of aggression. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 99(8): 5664-5668 - full text

Panksepp JB & R Huber. 2002. Long-term changes in serotonin function: dynamic neurochemical properties in agonistic behavior of the crayfish Orconectes rusticus. J. Neurobiol. 50(4): 276-290 - full text

Goessmann C, Hemelrijk C & R Huber. 2000. The formation and maintenance of crayfish hierarchies: behavioral and self-structuring properties. Behav. Ecology & Sociobiol. 48: 418-428 - full text

Huber R & A Delago. 1998. Serotonin alters decisions to withdraw in fighting crayfish, Astacus astacus: the motivational concept revisited. J. comp. Physiol. A 182 (5): 573-583 - full text